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Addiction, Stigma, and Discrimination: Implications for Treatment and Recovery (Archived Webinar)

Activity Type:

  • On Demand

Release Date: 9/14/2015

Expiration Date: 12/31/2020

  • AMA PRA Category 1: 1
  • Participation: 1



International studies indicate that addiction to alcohol and other drugs are among the most stigmatized conditions in society and stigma is a major barrier to seeking treatment in the United States. Studies highlight several factors that influence the degree of stigma related to different health conditions and how these may lead to discrimination and poorer health outcomes. Recent research also underscores the importance of language and terminology in inducing implicit cognitive biases which may unconsciously affect clinicians’ and policymakers’ attitudes, judgments, and behaviors toward those suffering from addiction. This presentation will outline the background and significance of stigma in relation to addictive disorders, highlight how stigma influences treatment access, and treatment and recovery outcomes, and what can be done to address and reduce stigma to enhance the quality of addiction care.

Funding for this initiative was made possible (in part) by grant no. 5U79TI026556-03 from SAMHSA. The views expressed in written conference materials or publications and by speakers and moderators do not necessarily reflect the official policies of the Department of Health and Human Services; nor does mention of trade names, commercial practices, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.


  • General Member - Free
  • Resident-Fellow Member - Free
  • Medical Student Member - Free
  • Non-Member - Free


Educational Objectives

  1. Identify the most common stigmatized conditions in the United States and internationally
  2. Name and describe the two main factors that influence the degree of perceived stigma
  3. Describe the significance of language, terminology, and implicit cognition, in influencing stigma.
  4. List the ways stigma influences treatment and recovery from addiction

Target Audience

This program is designed for physicians and clinicians who treat patients with addiction.

Estimated Time to Complete

Estimated Duration: 1 hour
Program Begin Date: September 15, 2015
Program Review Date: November 1, 2018
Program End Date: December 31, 2020

How to Earn Credit

Complete each section of the course, including the CME quiz and evaluation. You will then be eligible to print either a Certificate of Credit for physicians or a Certificate of Attendance for non-physicians.

Continuing Education Credit

The American Psychiatric Association (APA) is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The APA designates this CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™. Physicians should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Faculty and Planner Disclosures


  • John F. Kelly, Ph.D., Elizabeth R. Spallin Associate Professor of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School; Director, MGH Recovery Research Institute; Program Director, MGH Addiction Recovery Management Service; Associate Director, MGH Center for Addiction Medicine. Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests.

Program Planners

  • Andrew Saxon, M.D. – Professor, Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences; Director, Addiction Psychiatry Residency Program, University of Washington; Director, Center of Excellence in Substance Abuse Treatment and Education (CESATE) VA Puget Sound Health Care System. Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests.
  • Beatrice Eld – Associate Director, Addiction Psychiatry, American Psychiatric Association. Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests.
  • John A. Renner, Jr., M.D. – Boston University School of Medicine, Director, Addiction Psychiatry Residency Training, Boston University Medical Center and VA Boston Healthcare System. Disclosure: Stock/other financial options: Johnson & Johnson and General Electric.
  • Frances R. Levin, M.D. – Kennedy Leavy Professor of Psychiatry at Columbia University Medical Center; Director, Addiction Psychiatry Fellowship, New York Presbyterian Hospital; Director of Clinical and Educational Activities for the Division on Substance Abuse, New York State Psychiatric Institute. Disclosure: Consultant: Major League Baseball, Grant/Research Support: US World Med.

Program Reviewer

  • John A. Renner, Jr., M.D. – Boston University School of Medicine, Director, Addiction Psychiatry Residency Training, Boston University Medical Center and VA Boston Healthcare System. Disclosure: Stock/other financial options: Johnson & Johnson and General Electric.

Hardware/Software Requirements

Hardware/Software Specifications: 
This internet-based CME activity is best experienced using Internet Explorer 8+, Mozilla Firefox 3+, Safari 4+. This Web site requires that JavaScript and session cookies be enabled. Certain activities may require additional software to view multimedia, presentation, or printable versions of the content. These activities will be marked as such and will provide links to the required software. That software may be: Adobe Flash, Adobe Acrobat, Microsoft PowerPoint, and Windows Media Player.

Optimal System Configuration:
Flash Player: Adobe Flash Player 10.1+ 
Browser: Firefox 3+, Internet Explorer 8.0+, Safari 4.0+, or Google Chrome 7.0+ 
Operating System: Windows XP+ or Mac OS X 10.4+ 
Internet Connection: 1 Mbps or higher

Minimum Requirements:
Windows PC:
500-MHz Pentium II; Windows XP or higher; 128 MB RAM; Video Card at least 64MB of video memory; Sound Card at least 16-bit; Macromedia Flash Player 10 or higher, audio playback with speakers for programs with video content; Firefox 1.1+, Internet Explorer 7.0+, Safari 1.0+, Google Chrome, or Opera
Mac OS X 10.3 or higher with latest updates installed; 1.83MHz Intel Core Duo or faster; RAM: 128MB or more; Video Card: at least 64MB of video memory; Sound Card: at least 16-bit

For assistance: Contact educme@psych.orgfor questions about this course  |  Contact for technical assistance

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