Women and Opioid Addiction

University Professor Nabila El-Bassel explains how gender plays a role in the opioid crisis.

Caroline Harting
June 07, 2019

This spring, University Professor Nabila El-Bassel helped secure an $86 million grant for Columbia's School of Social Work from the National Institute on Drug Abuse. El-Bassel and her team from the School of Social Work, the Mailman School of Public Health, the Data Science Institute and the Department of Psychiatry are tasked with reducing opioid deaths by 40% over three years in 16 New York State counties.

The grant comes after decades of conducting research on people in marginalized communities with HIV and drug addiction issues. Through this work, El-Bassel and her team from the Social Intervention Group have created couple-based HIV interventions that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recognizes as best practices.

In a recent article in Bustle, El-Bassel draws from her deep knowledge of couple-based therapies to describe how women in abusive relationships face unique challenges in the opioid crisis.