The NIH HEAL (Helping to End Addiction Long-term) initiative is helping to fund an ambitious research project called the HEALthy Brain and Child Development (HBCD) study. This study, which will use many of the same neuroimaging and other methods as the ABCD study, will follow a large cohort of children from the prenatal period to age 10.
As our communities, healthcare systems, and government agencies join in the effort to reverse the epidemic of opioid overdoses and solve the opioid crisis, it is not enough to focus all our resources on treating people who are already addicted to opioids
This September, I was invited by Thomas Farley, the Health Commissioner of Philadelphia, to see firsthand how that city is responding to the opioid crisis. We toured Prevention Point, a private non-profit organization providing harm reduction services to Philadelphia and the surrounding area.
Children of intervention recipients showed improved developmental functioning before age 5, as well as fewer problem behaviors; better academic, cognitive, and emotional skills; and less risk behavior from ages 6 to 18.