Progress on Opioid Education and Naloxone Training Program
Since August 2019, 2,027 members of the Columbia community have been trained in 116 sessions and now carry life-saving naloxone to be used in the case of an opioid overdose.
This story has been updated since original posting to reflect training participants through June 2021. Columbia Health shifted its naloxone training program to virtual delivery in mid-March 2020 to comply with New York State's stay-at-home orders. Please visit the Opioid Education and Naloxone Training page to learn more about the program.
The program has identified and trained members of the campus community — both students and staff — to recognize signs of opioid overdose and administer lifesaving medication.
Response to training opportunities within the Columbia community has been strong: by the summer’s end staff participants included Columbia Health, Lerner Hall Operations, Residential Life, and Undergraduate Student Life. Students from NSOP Orientation Leaders, Resident Advisers (CC/SEAS/GS), and GS Peer Advisors have completed the training. Through September 2019, trainings are planned for new Public Safety sergeants, Columbia Health peer leaders, student organizations, first year undergraduate students, and student council members. Moving forward, the training will also fulfill the Wellness requirement for Fraternity and Sorority Alpha standards at Columbia
The participation levels far exceed targets set in the original grant proposal. Trainings have been well-received, with a number of participants expressing interest in becoming more involved with the project.
This summer, the team received phase 2 funding through the Irving Institute CTSA at Columbia University pilot Collaborative and Multidisciplinary Pilot Research Awards (CaMPR) to continue evaluation of the training program (Principal Investigators: Rachel Shelton; Lisa Rosen-Metsch).
Research conducted as part of the training program assesses participant interest, motivation, and attitude. The team seeks to understand the level of concern around administering naloxone, including potential punitive or legal implications; assess the confidence and willingness created in participants to carry and administer naloxone; and consider opportunities and barriers to expand the program to other college campuses nationally.
The NYC government estimates that 3 New Yorkers die from a drug overdose every day. “We do this training – not just for our campus community – but also for our greater New York community. This program puts naloxone closer to those who might need it,” said Michael McNeil, Columbia Health Chief of Administration and Opioid Overdose Prevention Program Director.
As part of the initiative, Columbia Health became a Registered Opioid Overdose Prevention Program, recognized by New York City and State Departments of Health.
In addition to participating in the training itself, several Columbia students also serve on the project team as part of the grant committee, training facilitators, liaisons to student groups, and assist with research. This effort supports objective 11 in the Columbia-JED Strategic Plan to ensure substance use policies and protocols best support students.
Members of the multi-disciplinary research group include:
Associate Vice President/Medical Director, Columbia Health
Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine (in the Center for Family and Community Medicine), Vagelos College of Physicians & Surgeons
Dean, Columbia School of General Studies
Professor, Sociomedical Sciences, Columbia Mailman School of Public Health
Assistant Professor, Sociomedical Sciences, Columbia Mailman School of Public Health
Chief of Administration, Columbia Health
Adjunct Assistant Professor, Sociomedical Sciences, Columbia Mailman School of Public Health
Associate Professor of Sociomedical Sciences, Columbia Mailman School of Public Health
Professor of Psychiatry, Columbia University Irving Medical Center
Associate Research Scientist, Department of Sociomedical Sciences, Columbia Mailman School of Public Health
Research & Quality Assurance Manager, Columbia Health
Program Coordinator, Department of Sociomedical Sciences, Columbia Mailman School of Public Health
Special Projects Assistant, Columbia Health
Nurse Practitioner, Columbia Health Medical Services
Director of Morningside Operations, Public Safety
Executive Director of Compliance, Student Financial Services
Student, Columbia College
Graduate, Columbia College
Student, Columbia School of General Studies
Student, Columbia School of General Studies
Student, Columbia Mailman School of Public Health