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$6.4 million grant to study how youth homelessness impacts opioid use

Updated: Feb 19, 2020

The Ohio State University

By Robin Chenoweth

October 10, 2019

For thousands of young adults who are homeless, opioid use seems practically analogous with living on the streets. Drugs are omnipresent; many of youths’ peers use them; and living outside affords little escape from opioids’ killer influences.

A new $6.4 million National Institutes of Health grant awarded to Ohio State will test for the first time the correlation between the two problems, to see if having a home can inoculate young adults against opioid use. The award is one of three NIH Helping to End Addiction Long-Term Initiative, or HEAL grants, received by the university.

Natasha Slesnick, professor of human development and family science in the College of Education and Human Ecology, is principal investigator for the project, along with Kelly Kelleher, professor of health behavior and health promotion in the College of Medicine.

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