9th annual Academic & Health Policy Conference on Correctional Health to focus on implementation science

March 15, 2016

The 9th annual Academic & Health Policy Conference on Correctional Health will feature an Implementation Science Track on substance abuse treatment for incarcerated individuals at release when it convenes March 16-18 at the Embassy Suites Baltimore in Baltimore, Maryland. 

The conference is hosted by the Academic Consortium on Criminal Justice Health (ACCJH), which is supported by UMass Medical School, and co-hosted this year by George Mason University. The mission of ACCJH is to improve the care and outcomes of justice-involved individuals. 

“Delivering health care to justice-involved individuals, who often have complex medical and behavioral health conditions, can be a challenge for correctional administrators struggling under limited budgets and the rising costs of health care and prescriptions,” said conference founder and co-chair Warren Ferguson, MD, a professor in Family Medicine and Community Health at UMass Medical School. “Implementation science is a key method to adapting and adopting evidence-based treatments behind bars.”

Seminars, lectures and peer sessions on such topics as mental health, infectious disease, juvenile justice, aging, substance abuse disorders and re-entry will be included in the two-day conference. 

The keynote, “Creating and Sustaining Effective Corrections and Public Health Collaborations: Teaming Up to Improve Health Outcomes,” will be presented at 8:30 a.m. March 17 by Steven Belenko, PhD, professor in the Temple University Department of Criminal Justice and adjunct professor of psychology in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Medicine. 

“Transitions Clinic Network: Transforming the Health System in Partnership with Justice Involved Individuals,” the plenary presentation, will be at 9:45 a.m. March 18 and will feature two speakers. Shira Shavit, MD, executive director of the Transitions Clinic Network in San Francisco and associate clinical professor of Family and Community Medicine at the University of California in San Francisco, and Emily Wang, MD, MAS, evaluation director and co-founder of the Transitions Clinic program and an associate professor of medicine at Yale University, will give the presentation. 

A special session featuring representatives from the National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA) and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), “Panel on Federal Initiatives and Future Issues in Grants,” will be at 10 a.m. March 17. The speakers are:  Erin Iturriaga, BS, MSN, program officer/clinical trials specialist, National Heart, Blood and Lung Institute; Denise Juliano-Bult, MSW, program chief, Division of Services and Intervention Research, National Institute of Mental Health; Ruby Qazilbash, associate deputy director at the Bureau of Justice Assistance, DOJ; and Tisha R. A. Wiley, PhD, Health Sciences administrator, Services Research Branch, NIDA. The panelists will discuss the new initiatives and strategic directions of organizations that provide grants in criminal justice health. 

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