National Addiction Treatment Week Inspires Medical Professionals to Treat Addiction and Save Lives

(Rockville, MD) October 19, 2020 – Today marks the beginning of National Addiction Treatment Week, October 19-25, 2020. The week, started in 2017, raises awareness that addiction is a disease, evidence-based treatments are available, and recovery is possible. There is a critical gap between the number of patients who need addiction treatment and qualified medical professionals available to treat patients using evidence-based approaches. During this dedicated week, the partners and promotional supporters of National Addiction Treatment Week join its host, the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM), to encourage medical professionals to learn more about addiction and treatment.

To save lives, patients with addiction need increased access to treatment. Expanding the number of medical professionals who are qualified to treat addiction with evidence-based care is one important way to accomplish this goal. According to SAMHSA, in 2019, 7.8 percent of people aged 12 or older (or 21.6 million people) needed substance use treatment in the past year. Of these 21.6 million, 4.2 million received treatment in that time period, with only 2.6 million receiving it at a specialty treatment facility.¹

This year, the week’s focus will be on providing clinicians and providers who work in a variety of medical settings and specialties with essential tools and resources needed to treat the disease. Physicians, board-certified in addiction medicine, and clinicians who treat addiction daily will inspire other medical professionals to join them by learning more about evidence-based treatment.

Engaging events of the week include Twitter chats with experts from ASAM, NIAAA, and NIDAMED about emergency medicine management of severe alcohol withdrawal and treating adolescents with addiction, respectively, and free insightful webinars on motivational interviewing, different career path options in addiction medicine, and alcohol withdrawal management. Throughout the week, clinicians and providers who already treat addiction will be sharing their experiences on social media.  Participate in the week by following @TreatmentWeek on Twitter and using #treatmentweek in your posts. Together, we can help more people receive evidence-based treatment and improve patient outcomes.

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Media Contact:

Christine Merrifield



¹ Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2020). Key substance use and mental health indicators in the United States: Results from the 2019 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (HHS Publication No. PEP20-07-01-001, NSDUH Series H-55). Rockville, MD: Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Retrieved from

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