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Substance Abuse and Mental Health

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HeNN: Help Near and Now

  • Tammy Anderson, Primary Investigator
  • Hui Fang, Co-Investigator
  • Cathy Wu, Co-Investigator
  • Julie Cowart, CBCB Research Associate
  • Haibi Hu, CBCB Graduate Research Assistant
  • Sachin Gavali, CBCB Graduate Research Assistant
  • Joshua Stout, CDHS Graduate Research Assistant
  • Logan Neitzke-Spruill, CDHS Graduate Research Assistant

HeNN (Help Near & Now) is an innovative iPhone and Android smartphone app that provides a GIS-based, interactive platform to connect people suffering from SUDs, and their families, to services and care providers where and when they need them. HeNN also establishes a peer network by allowing people to learn from each other through feedback on resources, which can later inform providers and policymakers about the utilization and effectiveness of services. Healthcare and community providers can use HeNN to find resources for their patients/clientele and to obtain analytics about how they use their services.

HeNN’s ultimate goals are to increase access to and use of SUD services, decrease SUD morbidity and mortality, empower users and communities with resources to minimize the impact of SUDs, and mobilize partners to become a local and national resource. While initially tailored to SUDs, HeNN could be adapted for mental illness, alcohol abuse, and other health problems, making it a scalable healthcare product with significant economic promise.

State Opioid Response
  • Laura Rapp, Principal Investigator
  • Dan O'Connell, Co-Investigator
  • Ronet Bachman, Qualitative Lead
  • Ron Beard, Qualitiative Coordinator
  • Eileen Sparling, Researcher
  • David Borton, Research Associate
  • Jessie Arnold, Research Associate
  • Solange Ealy, Research Associate

The State Opioid Response (SOR) is a 2-year federal SAMHSA grant awarded to states for the purpose of improving prevention efforts, access to treatment and services, increasing Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT), improve wrap around services, and develop and use data systems to inform action for opioid users. The Center for Drug and Health Studies (CDHS) will lead the evaluation component of the SOR project by planning and developing evaluation activities as well as analyzing the data collected. The project is targeted to serve 11,850 clients over two years.

Delaware’s Strategic Prevention Framework (SPF) Grant

Delaware’s Strategic Prevention Framework – Partnerships for Success (SPF-PFS) Community Evaluation Team (CET)

  • Laura Rapp, Principal Investigator
  • Steven S. Martin, Lead Evaluator
  • Sharon Merriman-Nai, Evaluator
  • Dana Holz, Evaluator
  • Darryl Chambers, Evaluator
  • David Borton, Data Analyst
  • Robyn Blake, Graduate Research Assistant
  • Shannon Streisel, Graduate Research Assistant
  • Initiated: 2015; Funding Source: SAMHSA through Delaware’s Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health

SPF-PFS grant programs aim to reduce substance misuse and strengthen prevention capacity at the state, tribe, and jurisdiction levels. They do this by helping grantees leverage and realign statewide funding streams for prevention. PFS is based on the premise that changes at the community level will lead to measurable changes at the state level. Through collaboration, states and their PFS-funded communities of high need can overcome challenges associated with substance misuse.

SPF-PFS is a continuation of the work done under the Strategic Prevention Framework – State Incentive Grant (SPF-SIG) (2009-2015) and the goals of the SPF-PFS initiative are to provide funding to the State in order to: (1) Prevent onset and reduce the progression of substance abuse, including childhood and underage drinking and prescription drug abuse; (2) Reduce substance abuse-related problems; and (3) Build prevention capacity and infrastructure at the state and community level.

The Partnerships for Success Community Evaluation Team (PFS CET) provides process and outcome evaluation services for all SPF-PFS funded community prevention Contractors as well as the PFS Management Team at DSAMH. The evaluation services include technical assistance and guidance on the five steps of the SPF Framework: Assessment, Capacity Building, Planning, Implementation, and Evaluation.  Consequently, the Community Evaluation Team provides guidance, technical assistance, data collection and data analysis that are specific to where each Community/State Contractor is in regards to the SPF process. Additionally, the CET works collaboratively with PFS Management, Community Contractors, and the Federal Cross-Site Evaluation Team to ensure that all process and outcome requirements are met for this project.

PFS Annual Report 2017.pdf

PFS Annual Report 2018.pdf


Delaware’s Strategic Prevention Framework for Prescription Drugs (SPF Rx)

  • Laura Rapp, Principal Investigator
  • Dana Holz, Evaluator
  • Robyn Blake, Graduate Research Assistant
  • Shannon Streisel, Graduate Research Assistant
  • UD was contracted during Year 1 and Year 3 of this 5-year project for evaluation

Delaware's Strategic Prevention Framework for Prescription Drugs (SPF Rx) is intended to raise awareness about the risks of sharing medications, and promote collaboration between states/tribes and pharmaceutical and medical communities to understand the risks of overprescribing to Delaware residents ages 12-25 and across the lifespan. SPF Rx is built on a community based approach to prevention and a series of implementation principles that can be operationalized at the Federal, State, and community levels. Funding is provided by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Center for the Substance Abuse Prevention (SAMHSA/CSAP). The Delaware SPF Rx is administered by Delaware's Department of Health and Social Services, Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health (DHSS/DSAMH).  The Evaluation Team works with funded community agencies and the State to evaluate ongoing prevention efforts funded through SPF Rx.  The Evaluation Team tracks and reports on process and outcome measures using data from prevention activity track tools, the Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) data, emergency department data, and Delaware School Survey data.  Additionally, the Evaluation Team provides tailored technical assistance to the funded community agencies as they plan and implement their prescription drug abuse prevention efforts.

SPF Rx Evaluation Report 2019.pdf

Evaluation of the Substance Abuse Block Grant (SABG) Prevention Efforts led by DSCYF

  • Laura Rapp, Principal Investigator
  • Dana Holz, Evaluator
  • Darryl Chambers, Evaluator
  • Robyn Blake, Graduate Research Assistant
  • Shannon Streisel, Graduate Research Assistant
  • Initiated: 2017; Funding Source: SAMHSA through Delaware’s Department of Services for Children, Youth and their Families

The Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant (SABG) program provides funds to all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, 6 Pacific jurisdictions, and 1 tribal entity to prevent and treat substance abuse. The SABG program’s objective is to help plan, implement, and evaluate activities that prevent and treat substance abuse.

In Delaware, the Department of Services for Children, Youth and their Families fund community providers to implement substance use prevention efforts. The major goals of this project are 1) to prevent the onset and reduce the progression of substance use and abuse for youth and their families through the reduction of risk factors and increasing identified protective factors; 2) provide primary prevention activities to prevent substance use and abuse through a comprehensive use of evidence-based strategies including education, information dissemination, environmental, community-based, alternative activities; and 3) build prevention capacity and infrastructure and the community level.

The role of the SABG Evaluation team is to evaluate the prevention efforts at the State and Community level, which include both outcome and process evaluation.  Additionally, the team provides technical assistance to the Community Providers and the State on topics such as data collection, survey design, and logic model building.  The Evaluation Team also provides ongoing feedback to the Management Team on overall progress toward project milestones as well as making recommendations to adjust identified indicators and interventions at the community level.

SABG 2018 Annual Report.pdf

Delaware Recovery Schools Assessment

  • Steven Martin, Principle Investigator
  • Cynthia Robbins, Co-Investigator

This state funded study assesses the need, feasibility, and practicalities related to establishing a Recovery High School or High Schools in Delaware.  The assessment addressed three (3) issues:  1) need, as evidenced by number of substance abuse affected youth and seriousness of their need for treatment and education services; 2) practical considerations including location of facilities or services statewide; and 3) recommendations for alternative programming and services the State may wish to support.

Monitoring Opioids to Reduce Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome: Informing Policy to Increase Contraceptive Access in Delaware
  • Mieke C.W. Eeckhaut, Principal Investigator
  • Tammy L. Anderson, Co-Principal Investigator
  • Jascha Wagner, Data Manager
  • Elizabeth J. Brown, Christiana Care Health System, Consultant
  • Inititated: 2018; Funding source: ACCEL

The project “Monitoring Opioids to Reduce Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome: Informing Policy to Increase Contraceptive Access in Delaware” (MORNAS) relies on Delaware Prescription Drug Monitoring (PMP) data to examine how the opioid epidemic is affecting Delaware's population of reproductive-aged women. The main aim is to help reduce the incidence in neonatal abstinence syndrome by identifying opioid risks among women ages 15-45 years, and how policy efforts aimed at increasing contraceptive access can better serve these women in Delaware.  

Hero Help Program Evaluation
  • Daniel J. O’Connell, Principal Investigator
  • Dan Maas, Coordinator
  • Shannon Streisel, Graduate Research Assistant

The Hero Help Program is a “treatment in lieu of incarceration” program that aims to provide treatment to individuals who are addicted to substances and have had contact with, or are at risk of being in contact with, the criminal justice system.  In 2018, the New Castle Police Department hired a Hero Help Coordinator to conduct overdose outreach and to provide assistance in navigating the process of getting clean.  The Center for Drug and Health Studies is responsible for conducting a program evaluation which will compare pre- and post- outcome measures from the date the Hero Help Coordinator was hired, as well as a concurrent control group comparison.  This project includes evaluation planning, data collection, and analyses.  At completion of the grant period a final report will be presented.

Evaluation of the New Castle County Police Department’s Hero Help Program

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  • Center for Drug & Health Studies
  • 257 E. Main Street Suite 110
  • University of Delaware
  • Newark, DE 19716, USA
  • Phone: 302-831-6107
  • cdhs-research@udel.edu