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AMERSA People & Passion

In September 2021, AMERSA launched a 10-episode podcast series, AMERSA People & Passion, that explores the world of substance use education, research, care and policy. The podcast is sponsored by the ATTC Network and hosted by AMERSA then-Executive Director Doreen Baeder (who retired in December 2021). Seven of the episodes feature subject matter experts across a variety of topics. The remaining three episodes are focused around “legacy interviews” with Richard Saitz, MD, MPH; Marianne Marcus, EdD, RN; and Sidney H. Schnoll, MD, PhD — who all shared their experiences as AMERSA members and discussed the history of the organization.

The ATTC Network Office spoke with Rebecca Northup, AMERSA Executive Director, about the vision behind the People & Passion Podcast.



How did the idea for the AMERSA People & Passion Podcast series come to fruition?

The idea started out as a sort of "lessons learned" during the COVID pandemic through the perspective of the different disciplines represented in the AMERSA membership. By the time we began the planning process in earnest, it was early spring of 2021 and so much was happening politically and socially in the US that we decided to broaden the scope and to invite proposals for podcast topics from our membership.


What was the overall goal of the podcast series?

There were multiple goals of this series: to preserve the knowledge of the history of AMERSA; to showcase the work of our multidisciplinary membership; and to provide listeners with the latest evidence on topics of interest in the world of substance use education, research, care, and policy.


Why is this project so important?

This series is important because it touches on a variety of critical issues and important topics in the field of addictions from an interdisciplinary perspective.


What did it mean to have the “legacy interviews”?

The "legacy interviews'' were very important for us. They were an opportunity to record the history of the organization through the eyes of some of our founding members. In these interviews, we hear how the organization had its origins in the Career Teacher Program in the 1970s and how it evolved to include nurses and other disciplines — while also hearing anecdotes highlighting how substance use treatment, research and policy have evolved over the past four decades. What shines through in these interviews is the role of mentorship in AMERSA — today's leaders stand on the shoulders of those before them and we see this generation paying it forward. The legacy podcasts are a way of preserving this foundation and ensuring the organization stays true to its roots as it grows and evolves.



Below is a compilation of all the podcast episodes, including their respective speakers and episode blogs.

Episode 1
Screening and Brief Intervention, AMERSA, and What You Should Do



      Richard Saitz, MD, MPH

      Nicolas Bertholet, MD, MSc


Episode 1 blog:


Listen to episode 1: ​​


Episode 2
Stigma – The Not So Silent Killer



      Cheyenne Johnson, MPH, RN, CCRP

      Deborah S. Finnel, DNS, CARN-AP, FAAN

      Richard Bottner, DHA, PA-C


Episode 2 blog:


Listen to episode 2:



Episode 3
Barriers to Treatment for Opioid Use Disorder: Why Aren't Pharmacists Stocking Buprenorphine?



      Jeffrey P. Bratberg, PharmD

      Lucas G. Hill, PharmD, BCPS, BCACP

      Lindsey J. Loera, PharmD


View episode 3 blog:


Listen to episode 3:


Episode 4
A Path for Substance Use Disorder Content in the Education Setting



      Marianne Marcus, EdD, RN


Episode 4 blog:


Listen to episode 4:



Episode 5
Are Peer Counselors the Missing Link in Addiction Care?



      Paul Bowman

      Colleen LaBelle, MSN, RN-BC, CARN

      Nicole O’Donnell


Episode 5 blog:


Listen to episode 5:


Episode 6
Leveraging Media and Medicine to Reduce Stigma and Improve Access to Addiction Treatment



      Stefan G. Kertesz, MD, MSc

      Lipi Roy, MD, MPH


Episode 6 blog:


Listen to episode 6:


Episode 7
Palliative Care: Bridging the Gap for Addiction Treatment in People with Serious Illness



      Julie W. Childers, MD

      Katie Fitzgerald Jones, BSN, MSN, APN

      Janet Ho, MD, MPH


Episode 7 blog:


Listen to episode 7:


Episode 8
Key Conversations: Dismantling Racism Against Black, Indigenous, and People of Color Across the Substance Use Continuum



      Holly Hagle, Ph.D.

      Marlene Martin, MD

      Miriam Komaromy, MD, DFASAM, FACP


Episode 8 blog:


Listen to episode 8:


Episode 9
History of AMERSA with Sid Schnoll



      Sidney H. Schnoll, MD, PhD

      Paula J. Lum, MD, MPH


Episode 9 blog:


Listen to episode 9:


Episode 10

Initiating Medications for Opioid Use Disorder—There’s an App for That?!?



      Elizabeth M. Oliva, PhD

      Andrea Caputo, DNP, FNP-BC, CARN-AP

      Annie Potter, MSN, MPH, NP, CARN-AP


Episode 10 blog:


Listen to episode 10: