The Iowa Consortium for Substance Abuse Research and Evaluation (Consortium) is an alliance committed to improving prevention and treatment of substance use disorders through collaborative research and evaluation. The Consortium conducts program evaluation and research, and disseminates findings to professionals in the field, public policy makers and others interested in evaluation and research. Administratively located within the National Resource Center for Family Centered Practice at the University of Iowa School of Social Work, the Consortium collaborates with representatives from the University of Iowa, the University of Northern Iowa, Iowa State University; state departments of Public Health, Human Services, and Corrections, the Governor’s Office of Drug Control Policy, the Iowa Judicial Branch; and representatives from local substance use disorder service agencies.
The Consortium facilitates multidisciplinary research to evaluate substance use disorder prevention and treatment efforts in the State of Iowa. Research and evaluation activities involve practitioners, treatment providers, state agency representatives, government policymakers, and researchers from institutions of higher education. The Consortium addresses its mission through the following activities:
- Supporting and conducting substance use disorder research and evaluation within the State of Iowa;
- Strengthening substance use disorder prevention and intervention strategies operating within the State of Iowa;
- Supporting the education of new researchers in substance use disorders and related areas;
- Contributing to the education of students and professionals in fields such as social work, health care, education, corrections, human services and counseling; and
- Contributing to the development of public policy related to substance use disorders.
In the coming year, the Consortium will continue its unique capacity for interdisciplinary alcohol and drug research and evaluation in Iowa. Specific projects include:
- Evaluating prevention, treatment and medication assisted treatment effectiveness in substance use disorder services offered at the community and state level in Iowa.
- Assisting the State in implementing quality improvement techniques at the state and agency levels.
- Assisting state agencies with epidemiological surveys and monitoring of substance use issues. This will also provide a resource for academic researchers, local, and state agencies in establishing priorities for programs, research, and prevention.
Funds for FY2021 will provide administrative salary support and other operating expenses for the continuation of the Consortium's unique capacity for interdisciplinary alcohol and drug research and evaluation in Iowa.