By collecting data on substance use patterns in our communities, we can learn a great deal about consumption rates and consequences. For example, we can find out how many youth have drank alcohol in the past 30 days, have used marijuana in the past month or are currently using electronic vapor products. But, more often than not, the data do not tell us anything about overlap between these substance misuse behaviors–that is, who is drinking, vaping and using marijuana at the same time, why, and to what end? This results in prevention practitioners implementing effective-but-separate strategies to address each substance when more synergistic and efficient approaches exist.
Addressing the use of multiple substance at one time, or polysubstance use, represents an untapped opportunity in prevention, given its prevalence, related consequences and impact on communities. This two-part, virtual learning event featuring a webinar and peer-sharing call, will explore current definitions of polysubstance use, national and regional polysubstance use data trends, challenges around (and possible solutions to) enhancing polysubstance use-related surveillance efforts, evidence-based risk factors for polysubstance use, and ways to maximize efficiency by applying cross-substance best practices in our prevention efforts.