States Learn the State of Their Substance Abuse Problem

From 1994 to 1999, Drug Strategies, Washington, produced and disseminated profiles of substance abuse problems and prevention and treatment efforts in five states and created a how-to guide to aid other states interested in creating their own profiles.

Drug Strategies, a nonprofit research institute dedicated to promoting effective approaches to the nation's drug problems, collaborated in this project with the National Association of State Alcohol and Drug Abuse Directors, which brings together state program directors to explore issues of common interest.

Key Results

  • Drug Strategies developed a list of indicators in four broad areas—alcohol, drug, and tobacco use; crime; cost to society; and health policies and outcomes—for use in collecting state substance abuse data.

  • Drug Strategies produced substance abuse profiles for California, Massachusetts, Ohio, South Carolina and Arizona.

    • Each of the profiles offered an overview of substance abuse issues in the state and detailed data on key trends. To provide context, state statistics were compared with regional and national figures.
  • Drug Strategies produced a how-to guide, Lessons from the Field: Profiling State Alcohol, Tobacco & Other Drug Problems. The guide sets forth strategies to create and disseminate a state profile, identifies key challenges, and offers resources.