Ohio Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Annual Forum – Sept. 15

The Ohio Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Steering Committee will hold its annual forum “Coming Together for Ohio’s Families Sept. 15 at the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, 2045 Morse Road #E, Columbus, 43229. The forum will feature keynote remarks from Kathleen Mitchell, vice president of the National Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (NoFAS) and special guest former First Lady of Ohio Hope Taft. The forum is free and open to the public. CEUs have been applied for. Click HERE to register. For more information, contactKaren.Kimbrough@mha.ohio.gov or call 614.752.8355.

Doctors increasingly face charges for patient overdoses

(CNN)Doctors are increasingly being held accountable — some even facing murder charges — when their patients overdose on opioid painkillers they prescribed.

A Texas doctor faces charges of illegally distributing these drugs in connection with at least seven deaths, according to an indictment that was unsealed this month.

Weeks prior, a doctor in Oklahoma was charged with five counts of second-degree murder for prescribing “horrifyingly excessive amounts” of potent drugs, Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter said in a statement.

In 2015, Dr. Hsiu-Ying “Lisa” Tseng became the first doctor to be convicted of murder for overprescribing painkillers. She was sentenced to 30 years to life in prison by a Los Angeles judge.

The number of doctors penalized by the US Drug Enforcement Administration has grown more than fivefold in recent years. The agency took action against 88 doctors in 2011 and 479 in 2016, according to an analysis of the National Practitioner Data Bank by Tony Yang, an associate professor of health administration and policy at George Mason University. Many other doctors have been sued in civil suits.

While high-profile cases against doctors have brought yet another spotlight to the nation’s ongoing opioid epidemic, experts say this is rare and overlooks the bigger picture.

To continue reading click here.

RFP: Expansion of Prevention Evidence-Based Practices – Deadline Sept. 15

OhioMHAS is currently accepting proposals for funding to support the expansion of prevention evidence-based practices (MHA-18-PW-Expansion EBP-014). This RFP will provide funds that will support opportunities for communities to expand existing EBP’s that have demonstrated a high return on investment and significant outcomes through either national or local evaluation. School systems also have the option of utilizing Opioid STR resources to expand other evidence-based school-based prevention efforts if they are already in practice in the school system. Providing a plan for sustainability beyond the funding period will be a critical component in the RFP process. Applicants may request up to $30,000.00. Proposals must be submitted electronically to MHAS-OPWGRANTS@mha.ohio.gov by 3 p.m. on Sept. 15. Questions may be submitted electronically to MHAS-OPWGRANTS@mha.ohio.gov by 10 a.m. on Sept. 8. Responses will be posted to theOhioMHAS Funding Opportunities page.

Binge Drinking Rates Dropping on College Campuses

THURSDAY, July 27, 2017 (HealthDay News) — After years of increases in binge drinking among the college crowd, new research shows those rates have now dropped.

Unfortunately, the reverse held true for young adults who did not go to college.

Between 1999 and 2005, binge drinking among college students jumped from 37 percent to 45 percent. But that trend reversed itself after 2005, landing back at 37 percent by 2014, according to the analysis from the U.S. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA).

Meanwhile, binge drinking rates among those who were not enrolled in college increased from 36 percent to 40 percent between 1999 and 2014.

“For many years, there was an increase in the percentage of college students in national surveys who binged,” said study first author Ralph Hingson, director of the division of epidemiology and prevention research at NIAAA. “We saw that up until 2005.

“But since then, the percentages have gone down,” he noted. “Same thing for driving under the influence of alcohol and our estimates of alcohol-related unintentional injuries.

“But there is still a lot of work to do,” Hingson cautioned, with binge drinking on the rise among 18 to 24-year-olds who are not enrolled in college. “And this group now has a higher percentage of binge drinkers than same-age college students,” he added.

Read more here.

Taking the Addiction Out of Smoking

A lightning bolt struck the tobacco world last Friday when the Food and Drug Administration announced a plan aimed at reducing the nicotine in cigarettes to a nonaddictive level. Within an hour, the value of global tobacco stocks plummeted — and for good reason.

The new F.D.A. chief, Dr. Scott Gottlieb, didn’t mince words in making the announcement. He noted that tobacco remains the leading cause of preventable disease and death in the United States, resulting in nearly half a million annual fatalities. And he pointed out that the cigarette is the only consumer product that kills when used as directed — half of its long-term users, in fact — and that nicotine is the root cause of cigarette addiction.

Reducing nicotine in cigarettes so that they are “minimally or nonaddictive,” he asserted, “is a cornerstone of our new and more comprehensive approach to effective tobacco regulation.”

This is exceptionally good news for tobacco control, and for human health. A legal cap on the nicotine in cigarettes could be one of the most important interventions in human health history. The point is not that nicotine itself causes cancer (it’s the other chemical compounds in the smoke), but rather that by rewiring the brain, nicotine acts as the driver to keep smokers smoking. Nearly everyone who smokes long-term is addicted.

Cigarettes with nonaddictive nicotine levels would be radically different from what used to be known as “low tar” or “light” cigarettes, marketing gimmicks now barred by law. Those cigarettes were advertised as delivering less nicotine and tar into the lungs, even though there was no actual reduction.

To continue reading, click here.


Regional Learning Collaboratives

Regional Learning Collaboratives

Ohio’s Regional Learning Collaboratives are designed to engage Ohio’s prevention professionals located within rural and Appalachian communities to offer guidance and support as they seek and obtain their Ohio Certified Prevention Specialist (OCPS) credentials. As a link within OCAM, coaches will assist with eliminating barriers, provide technical assistance and equip area professionals and community members with the necessary skills and knowledge to implement evidence-based prevention.

  • Assistance reaching your credentialing goals
  • Networking with other prevention professionals
  • Mobilizing community partnerships
  • Continuing education opportunities

Upcoming dates and locations:

September 18, 2017 10:00 am-2:30 pm
Ohio University Eastern Campus
45425 National Road, St. Clairsville, OH 43950

September 19, 2017 10:00 am-2:30 pm
Wood County Education Service Center
1867 Research Drive, Bowling Green, OH 43402

September 26, 2017 10:00 am-2:30 pm

Meridian Healthcare
527 North Meridian Road , Youngstown, OH 44509

To register any of these events go to:  www.pfs.ohio.gov/OCAM/SPF-PFS-OCAM-Trainings 

We will be having a working lunch.Lunch will be on your own. Laptops may be useful, but not required. CEUs pending.

For questions or more information contact Jennifer Benson at jenniferdbenson@gmail.com

OCAM was created to support the Ohio Strategic Prevention Framework Partnerships for Success State and Tribal Initiative (SPF-PFS) in the state of Ohio. Funding for the SPF-PFS is provided by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) Center for Substance Abuse Prevention (CSAP) and administered by OhioMHAS.

AP18 Registration Now Open

AP18 Registration Now OPEN!

Join colleagues and professionals from across  the globe at
AP18:  EVIDENCE TO ACTION Building an Evidence-Based Social Movement    

~ April 11-13, 2018 ~

Renaissance Arlington Capital view Hotel
Arlington, Virginia


Of special interest to advocates: The convening of AP18 will include a first-ever ADVOCATE INSTITUTE, a pre-conference session. The institute will run all day Tuesday, April 10th and the morning of Wednesday, April 11th. If you are an advocate working with a nonprofit organization or public health department, please plan to join us!

To register for the Advocate Institute, please CLICK HERE. The Alcohol Policy Conference series convenes researchers, community practitioners, public officials, faith partners and other concerned citizens primarily from North America. Building on the foundation of the first conference in 1981, this event will continue to emphasize the importance of moving from evidence to action in alcohol policy research, development, implementation, enforcement and evaluation.

Science Cafe

Science Cafe 

When: September 6th @ 6:30pm

Where: Research Commons (3rd Floor, 18th Avenue Library)
Eighteenth Avenue Library SE
Building 005
175 W 18th Ave
Columbus, Ohio 43210

Topic: The Opioid Crisis

A major contributor to the opioid problem is the culture of American health care. The goal of minimizing chronic pain markedly increased opioid prescriptions over the last 20 years. A small fraction of people chronically using opioid drugs for medical reasons will develop an addiction. Several opioid drugs, including heroin, are available at a relatively cheap price outside of the normal pharmaceutical distribution system. People with addictions often switch to these drugs. The “War on Drugs” is not succeeding in its goal of lessening addiction. A new development in the arena of opioids and pain involves medical marijuana. Lessening the opioid problem will require a multi-faceted approach.

Speaker: Lane Wallace, OSU College of Pharmacy

Lane Wallace is an emeritus professor of pharmacology at The Ohio State University. He teaches courses on addiction neurobiology and has received the BSPS distinguished teaching award four times. Research activities include animal models of addiction and computer models of dopamine signaling elements in the brain. Educational training includes BA in chemistry and PhD degree in pharmacology, both from the University of Utah, and advanced research training at Washington University in St. Louis.



The Substance Abuse Prevention Skills Training (SAPST) is designed to provide an understanding of the discipline of the prevention of alcohol, tobacco, and other drug abuse.

The training fulfills the 31 education hours required for an Ohio Certified Prevention Specialist credential. When: September 11-14, 2017 (Mon-Thurs)

Where: Ohio University Eastern Campus
45425 National Rd W St., Clairsville, Ohio

Time: 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

Cost: $100

Register: http://pfs.ohio.gov/OCAM/SPF-PFS-OCAM-Trainings 

Notes: Space is limited to 22 participants. There are scholarships available, for more information go to: http://pfs.ohio.gov/Scholarships

Toward Liquor Control: The Beginning of US Alcohol Regulation

Critics often attempt to marginalize our alcohol regulations as just Prohibition Era “nanny state” measures attempting to legislate morality. In a recent article in the Washington Post, Dr. Mark Schrad of Villanova University, worked to correct the “common understanding of the Prohibition Era” which he says is based “more on folk lore than fact.” As Professor Schrad notes, “Prohibitionists were the enemies of predatory business, not individual choice.”

The book pictured below is the foundation of our alcohol regulatory system and bolsters the notion that alcohol control is about curbing business practices that create social problems, not legislating morality. Toward Liquor Control describes how regulation does that.

Before Prohibition, alcohol was sold by large companies that owned retail establishments, called saloons, in most local communities.  Competition was fierce and aggressive sales were the order of the day. Social problems were rampant and included sales to children, family ruination, public nuisances, intoxication and addiction. This situation led to a Constitutional Amendment to prohibit all alcohol manufacture, transportation and sales.

As time wore on, Prohibition became increasingly unpopular and past supporters saw the problems of Prohibition. When repeal looked imminent, John D. Rockefeller, a wealthy entrepreneur of the day and non-drinker, commissioned a study of alcohol regulation. The authors, Raymond Fosdick and Albert Scott, began work in February 1933 and supervised extensive field investigations in several European countries,  field investigations in several European countries, the Canadian provinces and in various American states. (All listed in an appendix) By October of that year, the book was complete…just in time for states to begin working on the issues when Prohibition was repealed on December 5, 1933.

The repeal language gave states the primary responsibility for regulating alcohol.   While some states elected to remain dry at the time, most opted for some type of regulation. Given that few states had much experience regulating alcohol, Toward Liquor Control served a valuable purpose and most states followed the recommendations to one degree or another.

The authors begin with the need for laws to regulate alcohol. On page 1, they note that other methods have been tried such as moral education or temperance movements, “but in all the long struggle with one of the most difficult human problems law has remained our chief weapon in trying to curb the social consequences of excess.”

However, as they learned from Prohibition, such laws must also have the support of the public or they won’t be obeyed. As a result of their investigations, the authors’ primary recommendation was a system of “state control”, adopted by 18 and currently operating in 17 of our states. They recognized that many states would adopt a license model, but cautioned that such a system “contains a fundamental flaw in that it retains the private profit motive which makes inevitable the stimulation of sales.” (p. 11)

Most states did adopt a “license model”. However, most also adopted the book’s recommendations for a license system. In addition, many of the “control states” adopted license systems for beer and wine. It is interesting to review the 10 recommendations for a license system to see how they form the bedrock of today’s regulatory systems:

  1.   A single state licensing board: most states have some type of state board.
  2. Board members of high quality not appointed on the basis of political considerations: While board members are usually well qualified, there are political elements to many appointments.
  3. Prohibitions on a tied house and “every device calculated to place the retail establishment under obligation to a particular distiller or brewer.” Most states have this provision although exemptions are often granted for small suppliers and enforcement is varied.
  4. Restrictions on the number and character of places where liquor may be sold. Included was the need to regulate higher forms of alcohol more strictly than lower forms. Most states have such restrictions in the form of license quotas or prohibitions on location near schools, churches, etc.
  5. Classification of licenses by on and off sale, manufacture, processing and transportation. Embedded in the scheme for retail licenses was the need to regulate products of higher alcohol content more strictly than those of lower content. This was the basis for different license classifications. Most states currently have some version of this concept.
  6. Regulation on hours of sale: all states regulate the hours of sale. Some have recently extended them.
  7. Retail sale should both license the person and the premises. Most, if not all, do that.
  8. License law should prohibit sales practices which encourage consumption. Many states have these kinds of prohibitions in their “happy hour rules” or rules that prohibit high volume consumption sales practices.
  9. Advertising should be “rigidly restricted or forbidden.” Many states have rules prohibiting advertising to minors, but expansion of commercial free speech by the US Supreme Court has made advertising bans difficult if not impossible.
  10. An effort to control prices and profits. They noted that experience with this objective was limited, but over time most states have developed regulations designed to curb price wars and other practices when price drops induce excess consumption.

Toward Liquor Control is well worth reading and has a lot of wisdom for today’s policy makers. The book can be obtained via Amazon or from the Center for Alcohol Policy, which secured the publishing rights and has republished this important book.


Raymond B. Fosdick and Albert L. Scott, Toward Liquor Control, The Center for Alcohol Policy, 2011. 

“On Prohibition’s 100th anniversary, here’s a distillation of 3 myths about the temperance movement.”, by Mark Lawrence Schrad, The Washington Post, August 1, 2017.

Pamela S. Erickson, CEO
Public Action Management, PLC
P.O. Box 531726
Henderson, NV 89053