Center for Addiction Research and Effective Solutions (AIR CARES)
AIR CARES is a multi-disciplinary center composed of expert practitioners and researchers in the fields of medicine, public health, health services, education, criminal justice, workforce development, and behavioral health with the goal of preventing addiction, addressing the needs of those impacted by addiction, and elevating the voices of people with lived experience.
Who We Are
This video was developed by AIR, with funding from the Nevada Primary Care Association, to help onboard staff new to providing medications for opioid use disorder (MOUDs). The video includes testimonials from patients who have received MOUD services.
AIR CARES harnesses AIR’s 70 years of experience in the social and behavioral sciences to conduct research and promote evidence-based solutions to address substance use disorder (SUD) and mitigate its impact on affected individuals, families, and communities.
At AIR CARES, we address SUD holistically through focusing on the broader social factors, such as housing, living wage jobs, educational opportunities, and social connection. We work to identify and scale up effective prevention, treatment, and harm reduction solutions to meet the needs of our communities.
What We Do
We recognize that the primary education system has a role in preventing and/or delaying problematic alcohol and drug use, as well as connecting youth who may need behavioral health services for mental health and substance use needs to care.
We have extensive expertise in providing training and technical assistance to expand access to and quality of evidence-based addiction treatment.
Substance use disorder is a key driver of homelessness in the United States, and homelessness can exacerbate SUD. AIR CARES has rich experience in work focusing on homelessness, housing, and trauma-informed care.
Our work seeks to improve the psychosocial, intergenerational, and interpersonal connections that can address trauma; minimize the negative consequences of substance use disorder; and reduce the harmful policies that stigmatize addiction.
CARES works to address barriers to employment for people with current substance use or a history of it. We design human capital solutions to help employers retain talent, with a macro-level lens toward improving the social and economic well-being of workers and the communities they live in.
We are on the front line of work that focuses on the physical context in which people use drugs and the intersection of climate change, the built environment, and harm reduction.
A comprehensive approach must also address persistent social factors that strain our communities. By applying a socioeconomic framework and working across disciplines, AIR CARES is uniquely positioned to deliver broad and sustainable solutions to alleviate the burden of substance use disorders for individuals and communities.
Meet the Director
AIR CARES Director Amanda Latimore also teaches social epidemiology as an adjunct assistant professor at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. In this Q&A, she discusses evidence-based approaches to address substance use disorder, the intersection of the overdose epidemic and COVID-19, and the role of the social determinants of health.