Opening Scientific Plenary

Opening Scientific Plenary & Distinguished Scientist Lecture

Friday, April 7, 2017 | 8:00 am – 10:00 am


The ASAM 48th Annual Conference begins with the energizing Opening Scientific Plenary. Led by ASAM President, R. Jeffrey Goldsmith, MD, DLFAPA, DFASAM, the opening session will focus on the dawn of a new day in addiction medicine with an exciting lineup of ASAM award winners and luminaries in the field. 

Vice Admiral Vivek H. Murthy, MD, MBA – United States Surgeon General 

Facing Addiction: Shining a Spotlight on America’s Most Pressing Public Health Issue

In his 2016 breakthrough report, US Surgeon General Murthy showed the nation the ubiquitous reach of substance use and addiction in this country. Using staggering data, he defined the public health impact of substance misuse, but also illustrated the tremendousimpact that resonates throughout every community. Vice Admiral Vivek H. Murthy will discuss what led to the release of this landmark publication, what the country’s next steps will be, and why there is still reason to hope.

surgeon general
Barbara mason

Barbara Mason, PhD - R. Brinkley Smithers Distinguished Scientist Award Winner

Shedding New Light on an Old Problem: Novel Treatments for AUD

Recent advances in our understanding of the neurobiology of alcohol use disorder can serve as the basis for the development of novel pharmacotherapies. Specifically, the activation of brain stress systems in early abstinence offers pharmacological targets that can be restored to a homeostatic range of functioning and thereby support recovery. Results from clinical trials of novel medications in this domain will be presented, with implications for clinical practice

Patrice Harris, MD, MA – Chair, American Medical Association Board of Trustees

Sparking Change: The Providers’ Role in Combatting the Opioid Crisis

Prescription opioid misuse, overdose and death continues to be one of our nation’s most complex and challenging public health threats. The American Medical Association and its partner organizations on the Task Force to Reduce Opioid Abuse are working to reverse the epidemic through physician leadership. These efforts include urging physicians to use Prescription Drug Monitoring Programs, enhancing physician education, increasing access to treatment for substance use disorders, promoting comprehensive pain care, including non-opioid and non-pharmacologic care, expanding access to the life-saving drug naloxone, and strengthening state Good Samaritan protections for bystanders who intervene to help overdose patients. As chair of the Task Force, and Board Chair at the AMA, Dr. Patrice Harris will examine key data and policy trends at state and national levels, discuss their effectiveness, and highlight specific efforts still needed to reverse the nation’s opioid epidemic.

patrice Harris
Joseph Green

Joseph Green - Spoken Word Artist, Educator, and Activist

A Beacon of Hope: There Are No Lost Causes

As a spoken word artist, motivational speaker, and activist for the recovery community, Joseph Green uses poetry interwoven with storytelling to share his battle with addiction and subsequent recovery to deliver a message of inspiration to people who have chosen careers in prevention, intervention, and treatment. Using his own story, Joseph reconnects his audience to the source of their motivation, reminding them that, as important as it is to know what we are fighting against, it is more important to remember what we are fighting for.