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PA Forensic Drug Chemistry Surveillance Project

Award Information

Award #
Funding Category
Competitive Discretionary
Congressional District
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2019, $2,670,377)

The Comprehensive Opioid Abuse Site-based Program (COAP) was developed as part of the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA) legislation. COAP’s purpose is to provide financial and technical assistance to states, units of local government, and Indian tribal governments to plan, develop, and implement comprehensive efforts to identify, respond to, treat, and support those impacted by the opioid epidemic. The Harold Rogers Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) has been incorporated into the FY 2019 COAP solicitation. The purpose of the Harold Rogers PDMP is to improve collaboration and strategic decision making among regulatory and law enforcement agencies and public health entities to address prescription drug and opioid abuse, save lives, and reduce crime.

COAP aims to reduce opioid abuse and the number of overdose fatalities, as well as to mitigate the impacts on crime victims by supporting comprehensive, collaborative initiatives. The program also supports the implementation, enhancement, and proactive use of PDMPs to support clinical decision making and prevent the abuse and diversion of controlled substances. Grantees are prohibited from using federal funds to support activities that violate the Controlled Substances Act.

The objective of Category 2 is to support states in their efforts to implement, enhance, or evaluate effective opioid-related efforts within the criminal justice system.

The Pennsylvania’s Commission on Crime and Delinquency will sponsor the Forensic Drug Chemistry Surveillance Project to support five counties (Beaver, Franklin, Lackawanna, Schuylkill, and Washington) in establishing new quantitative, real-time forensic drug chemistry analysis workflow protocols. These new protocols will identify responsive strategies that enhance investigations by connecting cases and promoting rapid dissemination of critical information. Accurate, complete, and timely forensic drug chemistry data within a region can help law enforcement plan strategic and immediate responses based on local needs, and larger public safety investigative agencies will be able to use the drug intelligence to monitor trends and intercept drug trafficking routes. Improved drug testing will also enhance public information sharing about the dangers of drugs in the community. The University of Pittsburgh School of Pharmacy’s Program Evaluation and Research Unit will serve as a research partner.


Date Created: September 29, 2019