The National Institute on Drug Abuse provides background information and resources to better understand and reduce stigma. The page includes links to preferred language for talking about addiction as well as language showing compassion for women, infants, families and communities impacted by substance use disorders.
The language that members of the media use in their reporting plays a significant role in reducing stigma surrounding addiction and overcoming this critical barrier to treatment.
Webinar Description: Language matters when it comes to treating substance use disorders (SUD). Stigma has been proven to have a negative impact on health outcomes, not only leading many individuals with SUD to not seek treatment, but also influencing how health professionals treat their patients. Using non-stigmatizing, person-centered, and recovery-oriented language can help providers facilitate engagement in treatment for individuals with SUD. This webinar will explore the ever-evolving landscape of language around SUD and discuss strategies for healthcare providers and allied health professionals to address stigma within your practice.
Videos created with patients, family members and medical professionals.
AMA Journal of Ethics. September 2017, Volume 19, Number 9: 922-930. Sarah E. Wakeman, MD
Written by AMA Task Force to Reduce Opioid Abuse Junkie. Stoner. Crackhead. We’ve all heard the terms, used to describe those individuals who struggle with drug addiction. These words are dismissive and disdainful; they reflect a moral judgment that is a relic of a bygone era when our understanding of addiction was limited, when many thought that addiction was some sort of moral failing and should be a source of shame. We need to change the national discussion. Put simply, individuals with substance use disorders are our patients who need treatment.
The JAMA Network
New England Journal of Medicine Susan A. Glod, M.D. June 1, 2017
The AMA Substance Use and Pain Care Task Force urges physicians and other health care professions to continue taking action to help reverse the nation’s drug overdose epidemic—and the Task Force also calls on policymakers to take specific steps to remove barriers to evidence-based care for patients with pain and those with a substance use disorder.Learn More
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to reverse the nation’s opioid epidemic.