Chicago Data-driven OUD Screening, Engagement, Treatment and Planning System


Niranjan S. Karnik

Prime Institution: University of Illinois Chicago

Health services for the treatment of opioid use disorder are fragmented in the west side of Chicago, an epicenter for elevated mortality. This study will use a data-driven approach bringing together elements of the University of Illinois Health System into a unified approach. The study will develop an opioid response plan with key partners, including local health departments, community organizations, healthcare, and persons with lived experience. A digital classifier to screen for opioid use disorder will be implemented in the hospital and emergency department using machine learning of data from electronic health records, the prescription drug monitoring program, and patient-reported measures. Using a stepped wedge design, the investigators will assess the impact of the classifier and opioid response plan on improved engagement in treatment with medications for opioid use disorder and mortality in the neighborhoods served by UI Health. This community-engaged approach holds promise for improving resource allocation and planning.


Niranjan S. Karnik, MD, PhD, DFAPA, DFAACAP

Dr. Karnik is Professor of Psychiatry, Director of the Institute for Juvenile Research, Co-Director of the Institute for Research on Addictions, Co-Director of the CCTS KL2 Career Development Program, and Interim Director of the Center for Health Equity using Machine Learning & Artificial Intelligence at the University of Illinois, Chicago. He serves as Director of the Great Lakes Node of the National Drug Abuse Treatment Clinical Trials Network. His research focuses on data science, technology and community-based interventions for vulnerable populations with psychiatric and substance use disorders. In the past, he has worked with refugee children on the Pakistan-Afghan border, street children in India, foster youth in Central Illinois, and incarcerated youth in California. He worked at a youth homeless shelter in San Francisco and is continuing work with homeless youth in Chicago. He presently leads grants from the National Institute on Drug Abuse. He is a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association and Distinguished Fellow of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry.