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Gary A. Zarkin

Distinguished Fellow, Health Economics


PhD, Economics, University of Chicago
MA, Economics, University of Chicago
BA, Economics, University of Washington

Gary A. Zarkin, PhD, is a Distinguished Fellow at RTI, publishing extensively on the cost, cost-effectiveness, and benefit-cost of substance use interventions. Dr. Zarkin was a contributing author on Facing Addiction in America: The Surgeon General’s Report on Alcohol, Drugs, and Health.

He is currently one of the multiple principal investigators on RTI’s Data Coordinating Center for the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)-funded HEALing Communities Study that is estimating the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of expanding naloxone distribution and medication-based treatment in select communities hit hard by the opioid crisis. He is also a co-investigator on a newly-awarded NIDA grant that will develop quality measures for opioid treatment programs and test approaches to implement the measure to improve opioid use disorder treatment engagement and outcomes. 

From 2014 to 2018, he was the Project Director for the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) National Analytic Center/Analytic Support Center contract. In addition, Dr. Zarkin was the principal investigator on a multi-site National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) grant estimating the cost and cost-effectiveness of nine alternative medication and behavioral alcohol treatments in the Combining Medications and Behavioral Interventions for Alcoholism (COMBINE) study.

Before joining RTI, Dr. Zarkin was a faculty member at Duke University, Department of Economics. 

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