Rising Overdose Rates

COPE Student Curriculum Innovation Challenge Downloads

Medical School Addiction Medicine Curriculum: Designed for Medical Students by Medical Students

In 2021, the opioid epidemic continued to be a public health epidemic, with overdose a leading cause of death. The coronavirus pandemic exacerbates opioid and substance use and further harms our most vulnerable communities. Medical schools were "responding with new approaches to prevent, identify, and treat pain and substance use disorders, delivering pain management and addiction education, and leading efforts in this area to advance medical research and promote innovations in clinical care." (AAMC, 2019) With the support of the Opioid Response Network (ORN), COPE, an ORN partner organization, sought to build on these efforts and contribute to the resources of innovative, learning-centered curriculum available to medical schools by stimulating the knowledge, creativity and ingenuity of medical students across the country.

To that end, COPE sought submissions for the Medical Student Curriculum Challenge: Innovative Learning and Teaching About Substance Use/ Opioid Use Disorders. This effort was designed to stimulate, surface, and disseminate state-of-the-art learning resources to ensure that rising physicians learn about the prevention, identification, treatment, and recovery of patients with Substance Use/ Opioid Use Disorders (SUD/OUD).

COPE invited medical student individuals or teams guided by a faculty mentor to submit integrative approaches that integrate addiction medicine concepts into existing curriculum and support medical student learning in general addiction or opioid use disorders specifically.

Medical students across the country responded enthusiastically. From the outstanding 36 submissions, 8 winners were awarded an honorarium and 4 received honorable mention. These 12 exemplary curriculum designs are now available free of charge on COPE's website for use by medical schools across the country, free of charge. The list of curriculum designs and instructions on how to download is available here.

For more information, contact jen@copenow.org

Funding for this initiative was made possible (in part) by grant no. 1H79TI083343 from SAMHSA. The views expressed in written conference materials or publications and by speakers and moderators do not necessarily reflect the official policies of the Department of Health and Human Services; nor does mention of trade names, commercial practices, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.