Using Social Media to Detect Substance Use Trends During the COVID-19 Pandemic (HHS Region 1)

Date: June 17, 2021 Blank space (transparent) for table Format: Webinar Blank space (transparent) for table  
Time: 12:00 PM—1:00 PM EST Blank space (transparent) for table Cost: FREE Blank space (transparent) for table  


While substance use trends shifted during the pandemic, some substance use data collection methods were also temporarily suspended.  At the same time, social media was one way for people to stay connected to one another. In this presentation, Dr. Jessica Cance of RTI will describe her work examining the use of social media to detect substance use trends during the COVID-19 pandemic. This project used social media listening techniques to determine shifts in mention of the use of alcohol and cannabis before, during, and after the national emergency declaration. This presentation will provide insight into the ways substance use trends shifted during the pandemic and how the discussion of substance use on social media may reflect broader social norms.



  • Describe changing trends in substance use due to the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Describe changes in setting and contextual factors associated with substance use during the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Describe methods to track substance use trends on social media



Jessica Cance

Jessica Cance is a research public health analyst in the Substance Use Prevention, Evaluation, and Research Program of RTI International’s Behavioral Health Research Division. Although her nearly 20 years of research and practice experience has focused on the epidemiology, etiology, and prevention of substance use and misuse, she also has experience in suicidality, sexual health, and violence prevention. Dr. Cance has led and contributed to epidemiological research, program implementation and evaluation projects, and coalition building supported by state, federal, and foundation funding.




About the webinar: This webinar was developed in response to a need identified in HHS Region 1 (ME, NH, VT, MA, RI, CT) to address shifting trends in alcohol consumption amid the COVID-19 pandemic for the prevention workforce. This webinar is hosted through the New England Prevention Technology Transfer Center funded through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services administration.

Starts: Jun. 17, 2021 12:00 pm
Ends: Jun. 17, 2021 1:00 pm
Registration Deadline
June 16, 2021
Event Type
Webinar/Virtual Training
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