The University of Massachusetts Amherst

Paterno Leads Screening and Panel Discussion about Substance Abuse and Recovery

Jul 18, 2019

College of Nursing Assistant Professor Mary Paterno, PhD, CNM facilitated a community screening of digital stories by women in recovery from opioid use disorder at Greenfield Community College on July 16. The event, “Stories of strength, encouragement and hope: Local women’s experiences with substance use disorder and recovery,” promoted community discussion on opioid use disorder among pregnant and parenting women about how best to support these women at the community level.

After the screening, Dr. Paterno facilitated a panel discussion about the use of digital stories to promote hope and recovery for women dealing with substance use disorder. 

A team led by Dr. Paterno is one of ten nationwide winning teams of Phase 1 of the Health Resources and Services Administration’s (HRSA) Maternal Child Health Bureau (MCHB) “Addressing Opioid Use Disorder in Pregnant Women and New Moms” national Grand Challenge. The winning submissions were technology-based solutions to improve access to quality health care for pregnant women and new mothers struggling with opioid use disorder. The innovations aim to reduce barriers to obtaining safe and effective care and treatment, especially for families in rural and geographically isolated settings. Dr. Paterno's team won for the proposal, “The use of digital recovery narratives in increasing hope and supporting sustained recovery for pregnant and parenting women with opioid use disorder”.  The winning proposal advanced the team to Phase 2 and the team was awarded a $10,000 cash prize. The screening was the second phase of the team's project. 

In addition to Dr. Paterno, the team includes Daniel Weinshenker from StoryCenter and Pam Fitzpatrick from the Salasin Project/Western Massachusetts Training Consortium.



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