Methamphetamine Addiction:
Cause for Concern - Hope for the FutureĀ 

A Congressional Briefing Sponsored by The Friends OF NIDA
In conjunction with The Addiction, Treatment and Recovery Caucus

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Methamphetamine dependence has become a pervasive public health problem because it is easy to make and it is highly addictive. Policy-makers have been asking how they can decrease the toll methamphetamine is taking on our society, so on June 28th the Friends of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) held an educational briefing on Capitol Hill to highlight NIDA's methamphetamine research portfolio. APA Science Policy staffers Sara Robinson and Geoff Mumford arranged the speaker line-up and organized the briefing logistics. Seventeen organizations co-sponsored the event which drew 180 attendees…a science policy briefing record!

The briefing, entitled "Methamphetamine Addiction: Cause for Concern - Hope for the Future", was the third in a series the Friends of NIDA have sponsored over the last 12 months, and was coordinated with the Congressional Caucus to Fight and Control Methamphetamine, as well as the Addiction, Treatment and Recovery Caucus.

The three speakers included: Nora Volkow, MD, Director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse, who provided an overview of the NIDA methamphetamine research portfolio; APA member Richard Rawson, PhD, Associate Director, UCLA Integrated Substance Abuse Programs, Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Science, University of California - Los Angeles who discussed results from his NIDA-funded Matrix treatment research; and Vicki Sickels, a counselor in a research program in Des Moines, Iowa who provided her personal perspective on her recovery from methamphetamine addiction. By describing how research results can be turned into effective community treatment interventions, the speakers helped the audience understand how NIDA-funded research is working to help methamphetamine addicted individuals return to productive and fulfilling lives.

Both Congressmen Rick Larsen (D-WA), the Methamphetamine Caucus Co-Chair and Brian Baird (D-WA), who started the Caucus several years ago, attended the briefing. Rep. Larsen addressed the audience and, although impressed with the results, advocated for additional research on what treatment works best for whom.

Dr. Volkow's presentation [PowerPoint]

Dr. Rawson's presentation [PowerPoint]

NIDA's methamphetamine fact sheet [Word]

Pictures from the briefing:

Dr. Richard Rawson

Dr. Richard Rawson.
Nora Volkow, MD

Nora Volkow, MD, Director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse.
Vicki Sickels

Vicki Sickels.
Vicki Sickels, Charles O'Keefe, Richard Rawson, and Nora Volkow

Vicki Sickels, Charles O'Keefe, Richard Rawson, and Nora Volkow.
Congressman Rick Larsen

Congressman Rick Larsen (D - WA).
Audience members

Audience members.