Ending the opioid overdose epidemic, together.

Strategies to help communities reduce opioid overdose deaths

Sharing Successes and Healing Together

We want to help your community end the opioid overdose crisis. This website offers insights and tools from 67 communities across four states (KY, MA, NY, OH) that participated in the HEALing Communities Study. This large research study was designed to test the impact of the Communities that HEAL Intervention, or CTH.

How can we help you support your community in ending the overdose crisis?
HEALing Communities Study: Learn about the study and its findings
About the HEALing Communities Study
HEALing Communities Study Publications
Research for Everyone
HEALing Communities Study Partners

(Coming soon)

About the Study

The HEALing Communities Study (HCS) was a four-year, multisite research study that aimed to test a set of evidence-based interventions and approaches for reducing overdose deaths in communities highly impacted by the opioid crisis. Conducted from January 2020 to December 2023, the study was funded through a cooperative agreement supported by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Researchers from the nation's leading health agencies and four academic institutions in Massachusetts, New York, Kentucky, and Ohio partnered with community members in 67 municipalities across four states to implement and test the Communities That HEAL intervention. As part of the CTH, researchers collaborated with community coalitions to implement evidence-based practices for reducing opioid overdose deaths from the Opioid-Overdose Continuum of Care Approach (ORCCA). These evidence-based practices focus on opioid education and naloxone distribution, medication treatment for opioid use disorder, and safer opioid prescribing and dispensing.

See the full menu of ORCCA evidence-based practices and strategies used in study communities.

The CTH intervention also included a series of communication campaigns to help reduce stigma and increase the demand for evidence-based practices. We hope lessons from the HEALing Communities Study will help your communities respond to the opioid overdose crisis.

Learn more about planning a communications campaign and get resources used in study communities.

The study was carried out in partnership with the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration and is part of the Helping to End Addiction Long-term® Initiative, or NIH HEAL Initiative®, a bold effort to speed scientific solutions to stem the national opioid crisis.