Tuesday, December 12th, 2017

Substance Abuse and the Torture Survivor Experience

The varying degrees of trauma experienced by refugees and torture survivors can have physical, emotional, cognitive, and behavioral effects. In order to cope, forget, or ignore the impact of violent conflict, flight, resettlement, and adjustment some refugees and torture survivors may turn to substance use.

The objectives of this webinar are to:

  1. introduce the theories and model pertaining to substance abuse
  2. offer guidance in identifying, diagnosing, referring, and treating substance abuse within the refugee and torture survivor community
  3. address the apprehension of some social service providers in addressing substance abuse
  4. address the stigma and cultural norms associated with substance abuse
  5. offer best practices for dealing with substance abuse

The presenters are:

Eric F. Wagner, Ph.D., Director of Florida International University’s Community Based Intervention Research Group

Richard Mollica, M.D., M.A.R., Director of the Harvard Program in Refugee Trauma of Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School

Click the slide below to view the webinar.

Download a PDF of the slides here.

Eric F. Wagner, Ph.D. is the Director of Florida International University’s (FIU) Community Based Intervention Research Group (C-BIRG), and a Professor in FIU’s Stempel College of Public Health & Social Work. He earned his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Pittsburgh and was a Post-Doctoral Fellow at the Center for Alcohol and Addiction Studies at Brown University.

Dr. Wagner is an internationally-recognized expert on brief interventions for alcohol and drug users, with a particular emphasis on minority and immigrant populations. His community-based clinical research has been sponsored by the National Institute on Alcoholism & Alcohol Abuse, the National Institute on Drug Abuse, and Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Techologia. He has served as an expert for the United Nations, the United States Department of Education (ED), the White House Office of National Drug Policy (ONDCP), and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration on addressing adolescent substance use problems. Dr. Wagner has partnered with public schools in Miami-Dade and Broward County, with the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma, with the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians, and with the National Autonomous University of Mexico, and others in conducting his research.

Richard F. Mollica, M.D., M.A.R. is the Director of the Harvard Program in Refugee Trauma (HPRT) of Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School. He received his medical degree from the University of New Mexico and completed his Psychiatry residency at Yale Medical School. While at Yale he also trained in epidemiology and received a philosophy degree from the Divinity School.

In 1981, Dr. Mollica co-founded the Indochinese Psychiatry Clinic (IPC), one of the first clinical programs for refugees in the United States. Over the past three decades HPRT and IPC have pioneered the mental health care of mass violence and torture. HPRT/IPC’s clinical model has been replicated throughout the world.

Share This