The Role of Mental Health in the Opioid Epidemic

March 26, 2022

The opioid epidemic, increases in suicide rates and mental health issues are clearly related.  Individuals with chronic pain tend to have higher rates of mental illness and are frequently prescribed opioids.  When physicians cut patients off of their opioid, people often turn to street drugs like heroin to prevent withdrawal.  More and more often heroin and other street drugs are laced with fentanyl, worsening the opioid epidemic.  There is a common gap in the knowledge that the opioid epidemic and mental health are linked and this presentation is meant to bring attention to that knowledge gap.

Target Audience

This knowledge-based course is intended for Pharmacists. 

Learning Objectives

  • Discuss the neurobiology of dependence versus addiction-Pharmacists
  • Describe current opioid prescribing and overdose trends-Pharmacists
  • Discuss the relationship between pain, opioid use, and mental health disorders-Pharmacists
  • Outline the appropriate treatment approach for co-occurring mental health and opioid use disorders-Pharmacists
  • Describe potential patient outcomes when co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders are not appropriately treated-Pharmacists
Course summary
Available credit: 
  • 1.00 ACPE Pharmacy
    Auburn University is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education as a provider of continuing pharmacy education; credits are recognized nationwide.
Course opens: 
Course expires: 
Event starts: 
03/26/2022 - 9:00am CDT
Event ends: 
03/26/2022 - 10:00am CDT
Recorded Webinar
United States

PDF icon Cherry Jackson

Dr. Jackson, Pharm.D., BCPP, FASHP, FCCP received a B.S. degree in biology from Winthrop University. At the Medical University of South Carolina, she completed a B.S. degree in Pharmacy, a Doctor of Pharmacy degree, and an American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) accredited residency in Psychiatric Pharmacy Practice.

She currently serves as Professor in the Harrison School of Pharmacy and Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurobiology and Clinical Specialist at the University of Alabama-Birmingham.

She served as Professor and Assistant Dean at South University School of Pharmacy after a 12-year career at the Medical University of South Carolina. At the Medical University of South Carolina, she served as Director of Psychiatric Pharmacy Practice Residencies, Clinical Coordinator and Director of Pharmacy, as well as holding academic appointments in both the Colleges of Pharmacy and Medicine.

Board certified in Psychiatric Pharmacy Practice, her primary area of interest and research is in schizophrenia, mood disorders, and adverse effects of psychotropics. She lectures and publishes extensively in psychiatry, and is a member of several editorial boards.

Jackson has held leadership positions with the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, where she served as Chair of the Commission on Therapeutics, Chair of Program Committee, and two terms as Network Facilitator.  She served as ASHP Delegate, Legislative Chair and President of the Alabama Society of Health System Pharmacists.

She is also a member of the American College of Clinical Pharmacy, and the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy, where she served on the Council of Deans, and completed a Academic Research Program Fellowship. She was a Founder of the College of Psychiatric and Neurologic Pharmacy, where she served many roles and currently holds the office of Past President. She is a Fellow of the American Society of Health System Pharmacists and a Fellow of the College of Clinical Pharmacy.

Practice Site​​

Dr. Jackson practices at the Community Psychiatry Program (CPP) at the University of Alabama - Birmingham, where she serves as a Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurobiology. She helps to manage the pharmacotherapy of individuals with serious mental illness (SMI) and has served as a preceptor to Auburn students at this site since 2012.

Auburn University is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education as a provider of continuing pharmacy education; credits are recognized nationwide. The Universal Activity Number for this knowledge-based program is 0001-0000-22-011-L01-P and is intended for pharmacists. The initial release date for this live program is March 21,2022 and the intended expiration date is March 21, 2025.

Auburn University Harrison College of Pharmacy is a Board approved provider of continuing nursing education in Alabama by the Alabama Board of Nursing. Provider Number: ABNP1515.

Available Credit

  • 1.00 ACPE Pharmacy
    Auburn University is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education as a provider of continuing pharmacy education; credits are recognized nationwide.


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