University-Wide Network Focuses on Opioids

Ending the opioid epidemic requires a multi-faceted approach, so researchers across Georgia State University have come together to address the problem of misuse and overdose from opioids and other drugs. The focus of the network is to foster collaboration across a broad range of disciplines including law, public health, physiology, health policy, social work, health care and behavioral health, and to identify research funding opportunities.

Georgia State Law faculty members Courtney Anderson, Yaniv Heled, Timothy Lytton and Patti Zettler each bring distinct areas of legal expertise to the group. Anderson’s focus in on health equity and race. Heled is examining the role the for-profit corporate nature of pharmaceutical companies plays. Lytton’s expertise is in the use of litigation to advance public health. From her experience at the Food and Drug Administration, Zettler brings an understanding of the federal government’s role and the regulatory process for prescription opioids, therapies for patients with addiction, and pain management technologies.

“Georgia State recognizes the importance of breaking down silos to address critical issues impacting health,” said Stacie Kershner (J.D. ’08), associate director of the Center for Law, Health & Society, who researched state laws to prevent opioid overdoses while a fellow at the Centers for Disease a Control and Prevention. “Law and policy play an important role and lawyers need to be involved in the research to address opioid crisis. We are glad the center faculty can provide this expertise.”