Recovery Research Networks
The Research Need
Recovery from opioid use disorder is an ongoing process of finding a path to a healthy lifestyle. Though effective treatments can help, they may not be able to address the loss of jobs, homes, relationships with families and friends, or the effects of justice system involvement that often accompany the disorder. Recovery support services provide a variety of non-clinical services over the long-term, but their effectiveness has not been adequately studied. Also emerging are clinical continuing care services to address retention on treatment using medications for opioid use disorder that also require further research.
About the Program
This program advances research on the effectiveness of recovery support services in three ways. First, it creates multi-stakeholder networks (researchers, payors, providers, people in recovery) to build infrastructure to set research agendas; build tools, methods, and relationships; and train researchers needed to generate strong evidence about what works. The Helping to End Addiction Long-term® Initiative, or NIH HEAL Initiative®, will support networks addressing peer recovery support, recovery community centers, active recovery communities, continuing care, or integrated networks of care.
Second, the program supports research to prepare for clinical trials testing specific services, including peer interventions to help individuals continue or resume medications for opioid use disorder.
Third, it supports the Consortium on Addiction Recovery Science (CoARS), which coordinates research activities, develops cross-project activities, and prepares for a national organization dedicated to continuing this work.
To date, through the Helping to End Addiction Long-term® Initiative, or NIH HEAL Initiative®, NIH has contributed $13.9 million to fund nine awards.