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Aug. 23, 2011
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What is Addiction?
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The American Society of Addiction Medicine has released a new definition of addiction, highlighting that addiction is a chronic brain disorder and not simply a behavioral problem involving too much alcohol, drugs, gambling, or sex. This is the first time ASAM has taken an official position that addiction is not solely related to problematic substance use. More
Related resources:
» Definition of Addiction: Frequently Asked Questions (ASAM)
» Definition of Addiction (Long Version) (ASAM)
» Related Press (ASAM)


What is Recovery?
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The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration is inviting comment on a working definition and guiding principles of recovery. Feedback will be accepted until Aug. 26. Check out Recovery Defined – Give Us Your Feedback, and let SAMHSA know your thoughts, comments, and suggestions. More

ASAM Action Alert — Help ASAM Improve Member Benefits and Raffle Giveaway (ASAM Members Only)
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In conjunction with Friends Research Institute, ASAM is developing a Practice Based Research Network and would like all members to participate in the first survey. The survey will take 5-10 minutes and results will be used to improve the quality of ASAM membership. Complete the survey now. Surveys completed by Aug. 25 will be entered in a raffle to win a free copy of ASAM's newest book — Principles of Addiction Medicine: The Essentials. More


ASAM Career Center
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The ASAM Career Center is designed to meet the needs of both job seekers and employers in the field of addiction medicine. It offers employers targeted access to quality addiction medicine professionals, along with quick and easy job posting and online job activity reports. In addition, employers have access to the National Healthcare Network — a growing network of more than 200 top health care associations and professional organizations, including the American Hospital Association, American Academy of Pediatrics, and the Association of American Medical Colleges. Job seeking professionals can make sure their resumes are being seen by those in the field who matter most to them. The ASAM Career Center offers job seekers free and confidential resume posting, automated weekly email notification of new job listings, and the ability to save jobs for later review. More

Renew Your Membership Today
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Reminder — If you have not already renewed your ASAM membership for 2011, please do so now in order to continue to receive your membership benefits and services. Renewing is easy. You can renew online with your credit card by using your membership credentials, or you can contact the national office at 301.656.3920 or 800.844.8948. For an extensive list of membership benefits and services, visit ASAM's website at More

Brain Chemical May Explain Why Heavy Smokers Feel Sad After Quitting
Archives of General Psychiatry (free abstract)    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Heavy smokers may experience sadness after quitting because early withdrawal leads to an increase in the mood-related brain protein monoamine oxidase A, a new study has shown. This finding may also explain why heavy smokers are at high risk for clinical depression. More

Long Working Hours Can Lead to Alcohol Addictions
Addiction (free abstract)    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Longer work hours appear to be associated with higher rates of alcohol-related problems, including more frequent alcohol use, higher rates of alcohol abuse/dependence, and a greater number of alcohol abuse/dependence symptoms. These associations remain even after extensive adjustment for confounding. More


Shake-Up Under Way for Florida Mental Health
Health News Florida    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Some Florida mental health providers say they will no longer treat Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Florida patients in light of a surprising letter they recently received. The letter announces that the insurer will terminate contracts with behavioral health providers by Nov. 30 and turn over management to New Directions Behavioral Health, a managed care company. Treatment providers who want to continue seeing BCBS-FL patients must apply to New Directions and sign a contract within 15 days. Under the contract, caregivers would be paid 25 to 55 percent less than they were before. More

Addiction Professional Announces Outstanding Clinicians Awards, Past ASAM President Mike M. Miller Recipient
Addiction Professional    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Addiction Professional has honored its third group of professionals in the annual Outstanding Clinicians Awards competition. Past ASAM President Michael M. Miller was named the as the 2011 Outstanding Clinician. More

Implausible Speculation and Questionable Ethics — Alcohol Withdrawal Called Possible in Winehouse Death
MedPage Today (free registration required)    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Suggestions that pop singer Amy Winehouse's recent death could have been a consequence alcohol withdrawal syndrome are not implausible, according to pathologists and alcoholism specialists. More

Winehouse Death Renews Debate About Addiction, Choice and Tax Deductions
Forbes    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Much has been written about Amy Winehouse's life and her death. But it has also brought up questions about tax deductions, and how medical expenses are classified and by whom. More

New Approach Launched to Reduce Tribal Alcohol and Substance Abuse Problems
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A new federal framework to assist American Indian and Alaska Native communities in achieving their goals in the prevention, intervention, and treatment of alcohol and substance abuse was recently announced. SAMHSA will coordinate tribal substance abuse programs across the federal government with a special emphasis on promoting programs geared toward reaching youth and offering alternatives to incarceration. More

The Evidence Doesn't Justify Steps by State Medicaid Programs to Restrict Opioid Addiction Treatment With Buprenorphine
Health Affairs (free abstract)    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A recent study reveals that many state Medicaid programs restrict access to buprenorphine. However, buprenorphine was found to have a $1,330 lower mean annual spending than methadone and similar mortality rates when used for maintenance treatment even though buprenorphine was associated with more relapse-related services. By contrast, mortality rates were 75 percent higher among those receiving drug-free treatment. More


SAMSHA Webcast — Health Reform: What it Means for People With Substance Use and Mental Disorders
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With the passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, commonly known as health reform, important and far-reaching changes are under way in our nation's health system. More

Teach Your Patients to Keep Their Prescription Drugs Safe
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As part of the AMA's Educating Physicians on Controversies and Challenges in Health series, an online module features a video that provides an overview on prescription drug abuse and offers tips for physicians on how to educate and counsel patients. More

Upcoming Events

Date Event Location More Information
Aug. 26-30 Steering the Mission Through the Challenges of Change San Diego National Association of Community Health Centers
Sept. 1-4 World Convention of Narcotics Anonymous San Diego WCNA
Sept. 6-10 ISAM Annual Conference Oslo, Norway ISAM
Sept. 17-21 National Conference on Addiction Disorders San Diego NCAD
Sept. 19-20 Connecticut Recovery Conference Mystic Seaport Region, CT Connecticut Certification Board & New England Association of Drug Court Professionals
Sept. 21-23 International Network on Brief Intervention for Alcohol Problems Annual Conference and AOD-SBI Meeting Boston INEBRIA
Oct. 27-29 State of the Art in Addiction Medicine Washington, DC ASAM
Nov. 3-5 AMERSA 35th Annual National Conference Arlington, VA AMERSA
Nov. 4-6 2011 CSAM Annual Meeting and Scientific Conference Vancouver, BC, Canada Canadian Society of Addiction Medicine
Dec. 2-4 Comprehensive MRO: Toxicology Testing and the Physician's Role in the Prevention and Treatment of Substance Abuse Washington, DC ASAM
Dec. 8-11 AAAP 22nd Annual Meeting and Symposium Scottsdale, AZ AAAP

Upcoming Chapter Events

Date Chapter Location More Information
Aug. 26-27 Georgia Atlanta 2011 Summer Conference
Sept. 8-11 New England/Massachusetts Hyannis, Cape Cod, MA 24th Cape Cod Symposium on Addictive Disorders
Sept. 15 Texas Austin, TX Texas Chapter Business Meeting
Sept. 16 Texas Austin, TX 4th Annual Addiction Symposium, "Walking the Tightrope of Chronic Pain Management"
Oct. 12-15 California Long Beach, CA 2011 Addiction Medicine State of the Art Conference


Educational Resources

Physician Clinical Support System

Families Facing Addiction
Free social networking site to unite families who are coping with the addiction of a loved one.

Brief Strategic Family Therapy for Adolescent Drug Abuse - Orchestrating Change

Screening for Tobacco, Alcohol and Other Drug Use

Current Psychiatry
Benzodiazepines and Stimulants for Patients With Substance Use Disorders

Current Options in the Management of Opioid Dependence: A Review

Bill Moyers on Addiction
(5 Part Special)

Click here for more ASAM CME activities.

ASAM Weekly
Richard G. Soper, M.D., J.D., M.S., FASAM, Editor-In-Chief, ASAM Weekly
Dawn Howell, ASAM Communications Manager, 301.656.3920 ext. 119
Brendan McEntee, ASAM Publications Coordinator, 301.656.3920 ext. 101
Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, MultiBriefs, 469.420.2601   Download media kit
Meghan Day, Content Editor, MultiBriefs, 469.420.2650   Contribute news

ASAM reviews the content of each article included in ASAM Weekly to ensure that it is reflective of the mission of ASAM, aligned with the core principles of addiction medicine and of interest to our members. The articles cited in ASAM Weekly are offered for information only and ASAM is not responsible for the content of the articles.

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