Award secures ongoing RTI support for SAMHSA’s survey to help reduce the impact of substance abuse and mental illness in the U.S.
RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. — RTI International, a nonprofit research institute, was recently awarded a seven-year contract from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) to continue its more than 30 years of support of the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH). NSDUH is the principal source of data on the prevalence of mental health and substance use in the U.S., providing annual data at the national, state and substate levels and among demographic subgroups.
“The NSDUH program is a foundational plank in our nation’s public health data infrastructure and has been a cornerstone of RTI’s survey research offerings for decades,” said Tim J. Gabel, president and CEO of RTI. “Our partnership with SAMHSA in this important endeavor is a source of great pride for our project team and all of RTI, and we are pleased to have the opportunity to continue our support in helping to understand and address substance use and mental health issues across the country.”
The data collected by RTI allows federal agencies, policymakers, public health leaders, health care providers and researchers, among others, to take an evidence-based approach to allocating resources, building and launching prevention efforts, and promoting recovery support services.
“We are thrilled to continue this extremely important work with SAMHSA,” said RTI project director David Hunter. “We need fast and accurate data on trends, consequences and risks of substance use and related mental health issues now more than ever.”
Over the past few decades, RTI has collaborated with SAMHSA to increase the timeliness and utility of NSDUH data through innovation and adaptation to changing data users’ needs. RTI has supported methodological field tests, new study designs, updated measures of substance use disorder and mental illness, and quicker reporting of results.
Most recently, RTI led a swift response to challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, which allowed NSDUH — historically an in-person survey — to resume data collection before many other national surveys.