About Us

Kelly S. Ramsey, MD, MPH, MA, FACP

Candidate for Region I Director

Biography and Statement

ramsey-asam-election-2020

1. What are your greatest contributions to ASAM and the field of addiction medicine?

I am a tireless advocate for PWUD (people who use drugs) and for increased knowledge and understanding of SUD. I am active on the clinical level: I have a large panel of patients with OUD (on MAT) and oversee a vast MAT program in a FQHC, operating in 9 sites (geographically spread from the Capital District to Suffolk County), with 9 multidisciplinary teams, seeing ~900 patients.

I am active on the advocacy front: both on the state and federal levels, but also regionally. I am active in multiple counties in NYS working to get MAT in the jails and state prisons, educating Judges/drug courts/CPS/district attorneys, etc. on the benefits of MAT. I have led multiple buprenorphine waiver trainings across NYS.

I speak frequently in multiple forums on all issues related to drug user health. I am a NYSAM BOD member and Co-Chair of the Education Committee, which is responsible for planning the curriculum for our annual scientific meeting. I email blast our teams on a weekly basis with knowledge and information disseminated by ASAM.

2. How would your election benefit ASAM and the field of addiction medicine?

I think I have a good sense of the playing field across NYS with respect to SUD and PWUD. Being a Hudson Valley/upstate resident, I am in touch with the unique needs of PWUD outside of NYC.

I bring a harm reduction background, low threshold approach to the treatment of SUD with me which is a counterpoint to the traditional view of SUD treatment. I bring 2.5 decades of experience working with PWUD, beginning as a needle exchange volunteer in Santa Cruz, CA in the early 1990s when it was illegal (even in Santa Cruz!).

I am passionate about my work and bring that passion to all my commitments outside my job. I hope that my work will help normalize MAT and the treatment of SUD as a chronic medical condition. Only by actively tackling the stigma towards PWUD will we be able to move forward with respect to comprehensive care (including MAT) as the standard of care for PWUD.

Biographical Sketch

Dr. Kelly S. Ramsey is an internal medicine physician who has treated substance use disorder since 2004. She worked as Medical Director of an academic center-based OTP in the South Bronx before working for a decade for a large FQHC in the Hudson Valley where she created and grew a MAT program for OUD and AUD to 10 sites and 1500 patients.

Dr. Ramsey currently works as the Associate Chief of Addiction Medicine at NYS OASAS. Dr. Ramsey has provided expert advice to the New York State Department of Health AIDS Institute by serving on numerous committees for over a decade, including the Co-Chair of the HIV Quality of Care Advisory Committee (QAC), and, until starting at OASAS in June 2020, Vice-Chair of the Substance Use Guidelines Committee for the HIV Clinical Practice Guidelines (a collaboration with Johns Hopkins University) and Co-Chair of the Office of Drug User Health’s NYS Buprenorphine Advisory Group.

Dr. Ramsey was the recipient of the NYS DOH Commissioner’s Special Recognition Award for contributions to drug user health in NYS in December 2018. Dr. Ramsey serves as the HCV Champion for the Capital District for Mount Sinai to provide educational support for CEI (Clinician Education Initiative) on HIV, HCV, PEP, Prep, and Drug User Health (MAT, opioid overdose prevention, harm reduction) through the NYS DOH (live presentations, webinars, planning initiatives). Dr. Ramsey is the President-Elect for the NYSAM BOD and serves as Chair of their Education/CME Committee.