Opioid Use and Drug Injection in Rural Communities
The Delta Rural Health Study is a mixed methods research project focused on the broad and steady increase in nonmedical opioid use and drug injection in rural areas in the United States. This study, one of several funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (under the National Institutes of Health), examines the various social, economic and epidemiologic factors associated with drug use in rural Illinois, focusing on the state’s southernmost 16 counties (the “Delta” region). In addition to acting as a research coordinator, I have designed study protocol and data instrumentation, and I lead the “qualitative core” of this project. Dr. Mai Pho (University of Chicago Medicine) and Dr. Wiley Jenkins (Southern Illinois University School of Medicine) are the Co-PIs for the Delta Rural Health Study. An ongoing endeavor, I presented research on our work at Duke University as a doctoral fellow in Duke’s Social Networks and Health program.