Addiction Policy and Practice in the Time of COVID-19: Virtual Roundtable

Wednesday, April 8, 2020 12- 1 p.m. EDT

Please join us for the O’Neill Institute for National & Global Health Law Virtual Roundtable to discuss the immediate and long-term impact of COVID-19 on addiction policy. The U.S. is in the midst of two declared public health emergencies: COVID-19 and an overdose epidemic. Now more than ever, addiction policy sits at the intersection of public health, criminal justice, and human rights.

Speakers will discuss the current state of access to treatment and harm reduction services for people with substance use disorders. Topics will include recently waived federal rules related to medications and telehealth, as well as the availability of harm reduction and recovery support services. Speakers will also discuss potential for a future state that builds on innovations borne out of this crisis to re-imagine our systems through the lens of health and equity. A moderated discussion will follow the speakers’ presentations.


  • Brandon George, Vice President for Recovery, Advocacy and Programs for Mental Health America Indiana; Director, Indiana Addiction Issues Coalition
  • Yngvild Olsen, MD, MPH, is an addiction medicine specialist in Baltimore City, Vice President of the American Society of Addiction Medicine, and co-author of the book “The Opioid Epidemic: What Everyone Needs to Know.”
  • Joe Pritchard, CEO, Pinnacle Treatment Centers
  • Devin Reaves, MSW, CRS, Executive Director, Pennsylvania Harm Reduction Coalition


  • Regina LaBelle, Director, Addiction and Public Policy Initiative, O’Neill Institute; former Chief of Staff; Office of National Drug Control Policy in the Obama Administration
  • Shelly Weizman, Associate Director, Addiction and Public Policy Initiative, O’Neill Institute; former Assistant Secretary for Mental Hygiene; Office of Governor Andrew Cuomo of New York.

Please contact Johan Marulanda at for special accommodations.

Register here