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In The News

  • September 2022 – Andrew Voluse, Ph.D., Principal Investigator, and Matthew Morris, Ph.D., Co-Investigator, were funded for their project, "The Evidence-Based Treatment for Rural Intervention Courts (ERIC)." ERIC is a collaborative project between the University of Mississippi Medical Center and six rural drug courts that aims to reduce morbidity and mortality of substance use disorders and co-occurring mental health disorders (with particular emphasis on post-traumatic stress disorder) in targeted high need, low resource rural Mississippi counties by improving access to empirically validated mental health screenings and evidence-based treatment services to adults participating in felony drug court programs. To address the rural nature of the state, screenings as well as individual and group interventions will be conducted exclusively via telehealth to minimize treatment barriers. Additionally, this project will provide training and education in evidence-based interventions to project staff and consortium members. This $2 million grant, which will run for 4 years, is funded by the Health Resources & Services Administration's Rural Communities Opioid Response Program – Mental and Behavioral Health.
  • September 2022 – Matthew Morris, Ph.D., Principal Investigator, received 5-year R01 funding from the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities for a study titled 'Mechanisms of transition from acute to chronic pain in Non-Hispanic Black and White injury patients.' Non-Hispanic Black adults are disproportionately impacted by both acute and chronic post-injury pain relative to Non-Hispanic Whites, yet the biopsychosocial mechanisms underlying these racial differences remain poorly characterized. This prospective study will identify similarities and differences in the extent to which biobehavioral and social factors explain the transition to chronic pain in Non-Hispanic Black and White patients with traumatic orthopedic injuries. Enhanced scientific understanding of these mechanisms may provide a unique opportunity to begin mitigating these clinical pain disparities.
  • September 2022 – Matthew Morris, Ph.D., Principal Investigator, received 3-year funding from the Office on Women's Health (along with other Principal Investigators Lei Zhang, Ph.D., and Michelle Owens, M.D.), for a project titled, 'SUD and IPV among Mississippi's Moms: Initiative to Prevent and Treat (SIMM Initiative).' The project seeks to improve screening and increase referrals for treatment for substance use disorders (SUD) and intimate partner violence (IPV) among pregnant and postnatal women. This is critical given the prevalence of these conditions in Mississippi. To achieve these goals, the University of Mississippi Medical Center will partner with the Mississippi Coalition Against Domestic Violence (MCADV), Converge: Partners in Access (Converge), Mississippi Coalition Against Sexual Assault (MSCASA), Mississippi State Department of Health (MSDH), Community Health Center Association of Mississippi (CHCAMS), and the University of Mississippi's Center for Research Evaluation (CERE).
  • September 2022 – Danny Burgess, Ph.D. was interviewed for the September, 2022 edition of UMMC's online newsletter, "Consult." Dr. Burgess talked about "Building Emotional Resilience." Read this story here: Build emotional resilience with these quick tips - University of Mississippi Medical Center (
  • September 2022 – Jefferson Parker, Ph.D. (Principal Investigator) and James Rowlett, Co-PI), Co-Directors of the Center for Innovation and Discovery In Addictions (CIDA) were provided funding through the Congressional Earmark mechanism, as managed by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) for a project entitled, "CIDA Mississippi Horizons." This project has four elements. The first is implementation of Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) via telehealth (referred to as "TeleMAT") and the second is to provide substance abuse consultation to community Emergency Departments during nighttime hours. Third, we will be implementing a web-based statewide substance abuse treatment referral resource and, finally, CIDA's Academy of Addiction Training will be sponsoring several workshops and training seminars over the course of the next year.
  • April 2022 – In "Heed warning signs, seek treatment to recover from suicidal thoughts," Dr. McAfee and Dr. Morris discuss the increase in young adult suicide, particularly in the last few years. They contribute this increase partly to the pandemic and the growing popularity of social media, and encourage those struggling to seek treatment.
  • January 2022 – Dr. Parker and his work with Co-Director, Dr. James Rowlett, Medical Director, Dr. Saurabh Bhardwaj, and researcher, Dr. Kevin Freeman at the Center for Innovation and Discovery in Addictions (CIDA) is highlighted in the article "Center brings together education, research, clinical care to fight addictions" and "UMMC Opens New Center, Center Brings together Education, Research, Clinical Care to Fight Addictions." Through education, research, and healthcare CIDA addresses all aspects of addiction science and medicine with the goal of discovering new addiction therapies to help the community's increasing struggle with addiction.
  • December 2021 – Dr. Lim was featured in a WLBT news story about eating disorders during the holidays entitled "3 On Your Side Investigates: Eating Disorders and the Holidays." She discusses the importance of creating a supportive environment during the holiday season for those struggling with eating disorders and/or those trying to manage their weight.
  • November 2021 – Dr. McAfee was invited by the Mississippi Aids Education and Training Center and My Brother's Keeper to speak about the struggles of transgender healthcare in the series Transgender Awareness Month- Lunch and Learn. He spoke about the mental health components of engaging trans patients in HIV/AIDS care in November. 
  • November 2021 – In the UMMC news story "Experts: Gratefulness is possible, even in a pandemic," Dr. Burgess and Dr. Elkin discuss the physical and mental health benefits that are associated with being thankful, even during the most difficult times.
  • November 2021 – Dr. Burgess and Dr. McAfee encourage UMMC students from any degree program to utilize the free services provided by the Student Counseling and Wellness Center (SCWC) in "As students' stresses grow, counseling center services have grown with them." They explain that as the stress levels of students continues to rise, the SCWC has made changes to be more accessible, such as offering an online scheduling option and adding 18 hours of appointment time per week.
  • October 2021 – In "Self-care key to pandemic post-traumatic stress relief," Dr. Schumacher addresses the importance of self-care and its role easing the post traumatic stress that arises from COVID and the onset of variants, specifically for health care professionals.