Professor Honored by Society of General Internal Medicine
Jeffrey Samet (’92) received the Society of General Internal Medicine (SGIM) Quality and Practice Innovation Award on behalf of the Boston Medical Center (BMC) CARE programs at the SGIM annual meeting in Washington, DC, on April 22.
Samet is professor and chief of general internal medicine at the School of Medicine and Boston Medical Center, and a professor of community health sciences at SPH.
He founded the Clinical Addiction Research and Education (CARE) Unit in 1993 to educate health professionals, provide health care, and inform clinical and public health practice and policy around unhealthy substance use. CARE has been an innovator and national leader in integrating addiction treatment and behavioral health into primary care, prescriber training and clinical support to improve opioid safety, addiction consulting services, and overdose prevention and naloxone rescue kit distribution to high-risk patients and their friends and family. CARE innovations have become national models of care, with the integrated Office-Based Addiction Treatment (OBAT) program dubbed the “Massachusetts model” of outpatient opioid addiction treatment by the federal Substance Abuse Mental Health and Services Administration.
“Great programs that truly help patients are a product of inspired clinicians who are willing to re-examine the way that care is delivered and improve upon it,” Samet says. “We have been so fortunate to have such committed nurses, doctors, and social workers who make the system improvements to enable better care delivery.”
The SGIM Quality and Practice Innovation Award recognizes general internists and their organizations for successfully developing and implementing innovative model systems of practice improvement in ambulatory and/or inpatient clinical practice.
“I am moved and deeply gratified that the award committee identified addressing addiction in primary care as the most meritorious quality innovation in general internal medicine,” Samet says. “When we began in 1993, many did not even think that primary care was a place to address addiction issues.”
Now, he says, “it has been incredibly gratifying to see some of the best young physicians seek this field to make their contribution, motivated by the advances in the field and the unparalleled need of society to address unhealthy substance use in general and the opioid epidemic in particular.”
Founded in 1978, the Society of General Internal Medicine is a national medical society of 3,000 physicians who are the primary internal medicine faculty of every medical school and major teaching hospital in the United States.