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.
Through the Helping to End Addiction Long-term® Initiative, or NIH HEAL Initiative®, in collaboration with the National Institute on Drug Abuse, NIH has funded multiple awards to support Consortium on Addiction Recovery Science (CoARS) projects, clinical trials testing how best to connect individuals who use drugs to recovery-oriented community services, and networks of recovery-focused models of support, continuing care, or integrated networks of care.
Research examples supported by this program include:
- Engaging with diverse stakeholders, including people in recovery, payors, providers, and researchers to determine research priorities
- Developing and pilot-testing valid and reliable instruments to use in recovery support services research
- Developing and sharing uniform or pooled data sets that can be used for recovery support services research
- Developing trial designs and study protocols
- Preparing for clinical trials to test the effectiveness of specific interventions
- Addressing recovery support services developed for specific populations (such as young adults, individuals with co-occurring mental disorders, and individuals experiencing health disparities)
- Clemson University – South Carolina
- East Tennessee State University – Tennessee
- Maryland Treatment Centers, Inc. – Maryland
- Massachusetts General Hospital – Massachusetts
- Oregon Social Learning Center, Inc. – Oregon
- Partnership to End Addiction – New York
- Public Health Institute – California
- University of Connecticut School of Medicine – Connecticut
- University of Maryland, Baltimore – Maryland
- University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio – Texas
Participating NIH Institutes, Centers, and Offices
- National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH)
- National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS)
- National Institute on Aging (NIA)
- National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)
- National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)
Sarah Q. Duffy,
View Other Research Programs in This Focus Area
- Behavioral Research to Improve Medication-Based Treatment (BRIM)
- Enhancing the National Drug Abuse Treatment Clinical Trials Network to Address Opioids
- Harm Reduction Approaches to Reduce Overdose Death
- HEALing Communities Study
- Improving Delivery of Healthcare Services for Polysubstance Use
- Justice Community Opioid Innovation Network (JCOIN)
- The Continuum of Care in Hospitalized Patients with Opioid Use Disorder and Infectious Complications of Drug Use (CHOICE)