2013 Annual Report | Center for Applied Research on Substance Use and Health Disparities

Directors’ Message The Center for Applied Research on Substance Use and Health Disparities (ARSH) celebrated many accomplishments in 2013. Despite an increasingly challenging funding environment at the Federal level, ARSH maintained its position as a leader in securing external funding at Nova Southeastern University. This funding has enabled the Center to continue our national research on prescription drug diversion, as well as locally-based research studies among vulnerable populations, including young adults, gay and bisexual men, African American women, and indigent HIV-positive persons. These efforts yielded more than 20 peer-reviewed publications, as well as numerous scientific presentations at the local, national, and international levels. The year also marked a number of new research collaborations, including new projects and proposals with researchers from institutions across the U.S. and internationally. We are also excited about the expansion of our prescription drug diversion surveillance work into Canada. As we look toward the new year, our Center will continue to focus our research efforts among South Florida’s vulnerable populations, and on a number of disturbing trends in substance use and HIV incidence. These include an alarming increase in heroin use, expanded availability of a range of synthetic “designer” drugs, and a continuing rise in new HIV infections among young minority gay and bisexual men. Through innovative research designs, publications and outreach, ARSH will build upon its rich history of substance use and HIV behavioral research, while at the same time advancing NSU’s reputation as a top-tier research institution. The work we do requires a team effort. We wish to thank all of our research staff, external collaborators, and the NSU community for your vision, commitments and talents. We share ARSH’s successful year with all of you. 3