San Antonio Substance Use Symposium set for March 1 at UT Health San Antonio

San Antonio Substance Use Symposium logo

Statewide ‘Get Waivered Texas’ buprenorphine training program for health care professionals launches here March 2

SAN ANTONIO (Feb. 22, 2018) ― UT Health San Antonio’s Department of Psychiatry is hosting the second annual San Antonio Substance Use Symposium Friday, March 1. The free community event will be held in the Academic Learning & Teaching Center on the Joe R. & Teresa Lozano Long Campus of UT Health San Antonio at 7703 Floyd Curl Drive.

The symposium will bring together health care providers and community members working together to identify challenges and solutions to substance use disorder in San Antonio and Bexar County.

Get Waivered TX

A separate but related event, Get Waivered TX, will be held Saturday, March 2, also in the UT Health San Antonio Academic Learning & Teaching Center. Get Waivered TX is a buprenorphine training class for health care professionals, such as physicians, physician assistants and nurse practitioners, on how to get waivered to prescribe buprenorphine treatment for patients with an opioid use disorder. Learn more about this training here.

San Antonio Substance Use Symposium

“The speakers for this year’s symposium are national and local leaders in their fields. They were invited based on ideas expressed at our first symposium last year,” said Jennifer Sharpe Potter, Ph.D., M.P.H., professor of psychiatry and vice dean for research in the Long School of Medicine at UT Health San Antonio, who is leading the conference.

The full day of presentations and discussions will begin with an update on local substance use statistics from Timothy Grigsby, Ph.D., assistant professor of community health at The University of Texas at San Antonio.

A panel discussion will follow on resources available in Texas for those with a substance use disorder.

Morning breakout sessions include a discussion with Van King, M.D., from UT Health San Antonio’s Department of Psychiatry on the history, rationale and efficacy of opioid agonist. Another breakout session will be led by Lisa Cleveland, Ph.D., RN, from UT Health San Antonio, who will provide insight into the School of Nursing’s initiative to open a recovery home in San Antonio for mothers and babies with a substance use disorder. The third breakout session features Evita Morin, LMSW, from Rise Recovery and Tanya Jopling, M.A., LCDC, from Bexar County discussing the success of recovery high schools for students with substance use disorders.

One of the featured guest speakers is Robert D. Ashford, M.S.W., a recovery scientist from University of the Sciences, who will present “Promoting recovery with every word: stigma and discrimination.”

A panel on “Opportunities for Impact: What are the gaps?” will include Alister Martin, M.D., M.P.P., an emergency room physician at Massachusetts General Hospital, who is working to destigmatize and improve treatment for ER patients with a substance use disorder. Also on the panel are Rich Bottner, PA-C, from Dell Medical School in Austin, who will discuss hospital-based addiction treatment; and Dr. Potter, who will speak about treatment on demand, which provides treatment how, when and where it is needed.

A panel discussion on “Harm reduction strategies and other cutting-edge approaches for substance use disorders” will feature Colleen Bridger, Ph.D., M.P.H., director of the San Antonio Metropolitan Health District; Sharon Walsh, Ph.D., of the Department of Behavioral Science at the University of Kentucky; and Ashford. Journalist and writer Zach Siegal, M.A., will moderate the panel.

A training on how to use naloxone to reverse opioid overdose will round out the day’s activities.

Continuing education credits will be offered through the San Antonio Council on Alcohol and Drug Awareness for licensed chemical dependency counselors, licensed professional counselors, social workers, and family and marriage therapists.

Symposium committee members include Dr. Potter; Suyen Schneegans, M.A., program manager at UT Health San Antonio; Vickie Adams, coalition director of the San Antonio Council on Alcohol and Drug Awareness; Betsy Jones, coordinator of the Circles of San Antonio Coalition; Christopher Lopez, LCDC, from New Season; and Angela White, chief executive officer of Alpha Home.

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