The Substance Use Disorder Epidemic Among Youth: Responding to a Growing Crisis

Last year, the number of overdose deaths in the United States exceeded 100,000 for the first time ever. Equally alarming, the rate of drug-related overdose deaths among U.S. teenagers nearly doubled in 2020. Since that time, the data indicates that the mortality trend among adolescents is continuing, exacerbated by the nationwide mental health crisis, the COVID-19 pandemic, and ongoing barriers to evidence-based care for mental illness and substance use disorder (SUD) among teenagers.

In a new webinar, Manatt Health, the American Medical Association (AMA), and a panel of leading providers and SUD advocates with expertise in the youth and adolescent crisis will provide an overview of SUD among adolescents and discuss the challenges that states and communities face in addressing the substance use epidemic. We also will explore the consequences of failing to remove barriers to evidence-based care. Key topics include:

  • Trends in youth substance use, addiction and overdoses—and the related mental health crisis
  • Major issues and barriers to address
  • Federal and state policy options for responding
  • The intersection of the substance use epidemic among youth and juvenile justice issues


  • Jocelyn Guyer, Managing Director, Manatt Health
  • Daniel Blaney-Koen, Senior Legislative Attorney, AMA
  • Sharon Levy, MD, MPH, Director of Adolescent Substance Use and Addiction Program, Boston Children’s Hospital and Associate Professor Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School
  • Deepa R. Camenga, MD, MHS, FAAP, Associate Professor of Emergency Medicine, Pediatrics & Public Health; Associate Director for Pediatric Programs, Yale Program in Addiction Medicine; Yale Schools of Medicine & Public Health
  • Christine Rodriguez, MPH, Senior Program Manager, Harm Reduction at AIDS United

Date and Time:

Wednesday, July 27
1:00–2:00 p.m. ET

If you would like to receive an audio transcript of this webinar due to accessibility issues, please email us at

This program does not constitute legal advice, nor does it establish an attorney-client relationship. Views expressed by presenters are strictly their own and should not be construed to be the views of Manatt or attributed to Manatt.



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