Contact: Dennis Tartaglia
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For Immediate Release


Accredited Addiction Medicine Training Programs Grow to 36

Bethesda, Maryland – September 25, 2015 – The American Board of Addiction Medicine (ABAM) Foundation today announced the accreditation of nine additional fellowship programs to train addiction medicine physicians. With the addition of these programs, the total number of Addiction Medicine Foundation accredited training programs has reached 36.

Risky substance use and addiction constitute America’s largest and most costly preventable health problem. Approximately 40 million people in the U.S. have the disease of addiction, yet only about one in 10 receive any form of treatment. Of those who are treated, few receive-evidence based care. To help draw attention to this need and expand training in addiction medicine the directors of the new programs, along with directors of existing and prospective fellowship programs, were recently invited to attend a White House symposium alongside leaders in graduate medical education, federal agencies, and supporting institutions.

The September 18 symposium, entitled “Medicine Responds to Addiction,” was cosponsored by the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) and American College of Academic Addiction Medicine. Mr. Michael Botticelli, Director of the ONDCP, U.S. Surgeon General Vice Admiral Vivek H. Murthy, MD, MBA, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Tom Frieden, MD, MPH, and American College of Academic Addiction Medicine President Patrick G. O’Connor, MD, MPH, FACP were among those who spoke with symposium participants about the importance of integrating addiction medicine competencies, from prevention through treatment and recovery, into graduate physician training, certification and practice.

“As was discussed at the White House symposium by so many national leaders, addiction is the nation’s number one public health problem and the need for physicians who are trained to prevent risky substance use and treat and manage addiction is enormous,” said Dr. O’Connor, who also serves as Professor of Medicine and Chief of the Section of Internal Medicine, Yale University School of Medicine. “We welcome the new fellowship programs, which will train this nation’s future addiction medicine leaders to provide evidence-based care.”

The fellowship programs, which are modeled on the Foundation’s national guidelines, Program Requirements for Graduate Medical Education in Addiction Medicine, are based at leading medical institutions across the U.S. and Canada. American College of Academic Addiction Medicine hopes to assist in establishing 125 Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) accredited addiction medicine fellowship programs by 2025.

The new fellowship programs are (sponsoring institutions and locations in parentheses): Georgia Regents University Addiction Medicine Fellowship (Medical College of Georgia, Augusta, GA); Institute for Family Health Fellowship in Addiction Medicine (Institute for Family Health, New York, NY); Largo Medical Center Fellowship Program in Addiction Medicine (Nova Southeastern University West Coast Academic Center, Largo, FL); Memorial Hermann Prevention and Recovery Center (Memorial Hermann Health System, Houston, TX); MultiCare Addiction Medicine Fellowship (MultiCare Good Samaritan Hospital, Puyallup, WA); UCSF Primary Care Addiction Medicine Fellowship (University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine, San Francisco, CA); University of Calgary R3 Enhanced Skills in Addiction Medicine (University of Calgary Faculty of Medicine, Calgary, Alberta); URMC Combined Addiction Fellowship (Strong Memorial Hospital of the University of Rochester, Rochester, NY); and Virginia Commonwealth University Health System Addiction Medicine Fellowship (Virginia Commonwealth University Health System, Richmond, VA).

American College of Academic Addiction Medicine fellowship programs provide one year of subspecialty training, which is offered to physicians already trained and certified in primary care specialties (internal medicine, family medicine, pediatrics, obstetrics & gynecology) and other specialties, such as preventive medicine and emergency medicine. Accrediting these training programs will help to assure the American public that addiction physician specialists have the knowledge and skills to prevent, recognize and treat addiction. It will also help ensure that trained physicians are available to address common medical or psychiatric conditions related to the use of addictive substances. While there are also addiction psychiatry fellowship programs that address the need for treatment within the specialty of psychiatry, there is a profound need for knowledge in addressing this disease and its prevention and treatment across primary care and in many areas of specialty care practice beyond psychiatry. The American Board of Preventive Medicine (ABPM) has begun the formal process of bringing addiction medicine into the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) as a subspecialty available to diplomates from all medical fields.

Medical leaders participating in the September 18 symposium included representatives from American College of Academic Addiction Medicine, ABMS, ACGME, and primary care boards including internal medicine, pediatrics, family medicine, obstetrics & gynecology, as well as the boards for preventive medicine and emergency medicine. Federal agencies participating in the program included the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, National Institute on Drug Abuse, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Health Resources and Services Administration, Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, National Cancer Institute, Office of the Surgeon General, and Veterans Health Administration. Other participants included representatives of large government and private health systems, foundations and research organizations.

American College of Academic Addiction Medicine’s purpose is to establish and accredit addiction medicine training programs and support the advancement of the field and care of patients. The Foundation is governed by 18 distinguished physicians from a range of medical specialties. For more information, visit, call (301) 656-3378 or email