The Ongoing Opioid Epidemic Part 1: The Current Landscape of Opioid Use and Consequences

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Date: August 8, 2023

Time: 1:00 PM—2:30 PM ET

Format: Webinar

Cost: FREE

Contact Hours: 1.25 (Certificate of Attendance and Social Work/Counseling CEUs provided by the DC Department of Behavioral Health (DBH) Training Institute)

Target Audience: Prevention Professionals

Developed for: SAMHSA Region 3



Opioid use and its consequences continue to be a serious problem across the United States. The opioid landscape has experienced several recent shifts due to changes in demand and supply, the social determinants of health, and other risk and protective factors. The introduction of fentanyl into the ongoing epidemic was one such change. Due to its extreme potency, fentanyl is responsible for an ever-increasing number of fatal overdoses each year. Another change has been the spread of xylazine (“tranq”) use. Xylazine is a non-opioid sedative that is frequently used in conjunction with opioids to amplify and extend their effects. Use of each of these substances can occur intentionally or unintentionally, and both present challenges to prevention professionals.



This webinar will provide a broad overview of current opioid use and related trends in SAMHSA Region 3 and nationwide. It will review changes in use and consequences, and ongoing shifts in substance preferences— particularly the expanded use of fentanyl. Data on xylazine use are limited, but available information will also be shared. The webinar will also discuss the increasing frequency of polysubstance use involving opioids. It will review the different types of substances used—intentionally or unintentionally— with opioids, including xylazine, stimulants, and cannabis, and the extent to which this use occurs. Lastly, the webinar will review the latest research on the social determinants of health and other risk and protective factors impacting the opioid epidemic.



At the end of this training, participants will be able to:

  1. Describe the latest opioid use and trend data.
  2. Identify the scope of opioid overdoses and the most impacted populations.
  3. Evaluate the latest information on polysubstance use and types of substances being used together. 
  4. Assess the research on opioid-related risk and protective factors.



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.

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].

Starts: Aug. 8, 2023 1:00 pm
Ends: Aug. 8, 2023 2:30 pm
Registration Deadline
August 4, 2023
Event Type
Webinar/Virtual Training
Hosted by
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