Substance Use Prevention Policy Part 1: What is Policy and How Can It Help Achieve Prevention Outcomes

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Date: September 12, 2023

Time: 1:00 PM—2:30 PM ET

Format: Webinar

Cost: FREE

Contact Hours: 1.25 (Certificate of Attendance)

Target Audience: Prevention Professionals

Developed for: SAMHSA Region 3



Prevention professionals can choose from many types of strategies and interventions available to help address substance use issues. Among these are efforts to support and implement policies designed to reduce the likelihood of substance use. Policies can take many different forms, from federal laws to local regulations and ordinances. All of them, however, seek to reduce community and societal risk factors for substance use and strengthen protective factors. Implementing appropriate policies can have many strengths, including being a means to address inequities and reduce health disparities. However, they can also come with several drawbacks compared to other types of prevention interventions. As such, they should be implemented as part of a comprehensive approach to prevention. Part one of this two-part webinar series will describe the importance of policy change for advancing substance use prevention outcomes. While part two of the series will review the steps prevention professionals can take to support and improve policy change.



This webinar will summarize the importance of policy change as a strategy for prevention professionals. It will discuss why and how policy changes can have significant impacts on substance use prevention goals, including addressing inequities, and reducing health disparities. The webinar will describe the different types of policy options that exist and how they align with substance use risk and protective factors, including the social determinants of health. It will also discuss the strengths and challenges that policy change efforts can have compared to other prevention interventions and why they should be part of a comprehensive approach to prevention. As part of this discussion, the webinar will also provide an example of such an approach.



By the end of the webinar, participants will be able to:

  1. Recognize why policy change can be an important goal in prevention.
  2. Describe the types and objectives of substance use prevention policies.
  3. Identify the strengths and drawbacks of using policies as a type of prevention intervention.
  4. Explain how policy change can be part of a comprehensive approach to prevention.



Josh Esrick, MPPJosh Esrick, MPP is the Chief of Training and Technical Assistance at Carnevale Associates, LLC. Mr. Esrick has over ten years of experience researching, writing, evaluating, and presenting on substance use prevention and other behavioral health topics. He is an expert in providing training and technical assistance (T/TA) in substance use, having overseen the development of hundreds of T/TA products for numerous clients, including six of SAMHSA’s ten regional Prevention Technology Transfer Centers (PTTCs), the PTTC Network Coordinating Office, the Central East Addiction Technology Transfer Center (ATTC) and Mental Health Technology Transfer Centers (MHTTC), and SAMHSA’s Center for the Application of Prevention Technologies (CAPT). These trainings and products have covered a wide range of topics, including strategic planning, data collection and analysis, and identifying evidence-based prevention interventions for youth. In addition to T/TA, Mr. Esrick has directly provided many of these services to behavioral health agencies and other entities. He has published several academic journal articles. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the State University of New York at Buffalo and a Master of Public Policy from George Washington University.



Emily Patton, MSEmily Patton, MSc, PgDip holds a Masters of Science in Abnormal and Clinical Psychology from Swansea University and a Postgraduate Degree in Criminology and Criminal Justice from the University of Edinburgh. She offers significant professional experience in the fields of public policy development and analysis, criminal justice research, data collection and analysis, program development, and performance management.




In order to be eligible for the the contact hours/certificate of attendance, you must join the live webinar in Zoom.

Certificates must be requested within one week of the event and will be processed within 30 days.

If you are having issues accessing the room/application at the time of the event: Please email [email protected] at the start of the webinar so that we can assist you.



If you are in need of any special accommodations, please notify the Central East PTTC Webinar Team three weeks in advance of the event, or as soon as possible, by emailing [email protected].c

Starts: Sep. 12, 2023 1:00 pm
Ends: Sep. 12, 2023 2:30 pm
Registration Deadline
September 12, 2023
Event Type
Webinar/Virtual Training
Hosted by
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