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Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration - SAMHSA News - Volume X, No. 4 - Fall 2002

Agreement Helps Transfer Research Findings to Clinical Practice

SAMHSA and the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) announced a unique intradepartmental agreement this fall to expedite the application of findings from treatment research into clinical application.

The $1.5 million agreement between NIDA and SAMHSA's Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT)—both within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services—will help ensure that findings from NIDA's treatment research will be quickly and readily available to practitioners throughout the country.

Addiction Technology Transfer Center imageUnder the agreement, NIDA will provide funding to support CSAT's Addiction Technology Transfer Centers, a network comprised of 14 independent regional centers and a national office charged with increasing the knowledge and skills of addiction treatment practitioners and fostering alliances to support and establish best treatment practices. The purpose of the agreement is to enhance efforts to disseminate and apply findings from NIDA's National Drug Abuse Treatment Clinical Trials Network as well as other NIDA-supported studies to practitioners served by the Addiction Technology Transfer Centers.

Grants totaling almost $6 million were awarded this fall to add three nodes—Northern New England (covering 5 states), New Mexico, and Arizona—to NIDA's Clinical Trials Network. The network is now comprised of 17 research nodes around the country. These nodes are conducting a variety of research protocols on behavioral, pharmacological, and integrated behavioral and pharmacological treatment interventions in 27 states at 120 community treatment sites. More than 3,500 patients are participating in these studies. The Clinical Trials Network is designed to determine treatment effectiveness across a broad range of community-based treatment settings and diversified patient populations.

The National Institute on Drug Abuse, a component of the National Institutes of Health within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, supports more than 85 percent of the world's research on the health aspects of drug abuse and addiction.

In announcing the agreement, SAMHSA Administrator Charles G. Curie, M.A., A.C.S.W., noted that "This partnership is a significant step in our efforts working with the National Institutes of Health to define and develop a 'Science to Services' cycle and to reduce the time between the discovery of an effective treatment or intervention and its adoption as part of community-based care. According to the Institute of Medicine, the adoption into clinical practice of a research-based treatment can take up to 20 years."

NIDA Acting Director Glen R. Hanson, Ph.D., D.D.S., said, "This collaborative effort puts into place a system whereby health care providers can be more rapidly alerted to new and improved medications and behavioral therapies with which to treat patients for drug abuse and addiction."

He added that the intradepartmental agreement would mutually augment the outreach and impact of both NIDA and CSAT efforts to ensure that science-based findings are incorporated into clinical practice. And, the most important beneficiaries will be those individuals in treatment and recovery from substance abuse disorders.

For more information on NIDA's National Drug Abuse Treatment Clinical Trials Network, visit

For more information about SAMHSA's National Addiction Technology Transfer Centers, visit Or contact SAMHSA's National Clearinghouse for Alcohol and Drug Information at P.O. Box 2345, Rockville, MD 20847-2345. Telephone: 1 (800) 729-6686 (English and Spanish) or 1 (800) 487-4889 (TDD). End of Article

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