Program News and Events



They Followed Doctors’ Orders. Then Their Children Were Taken Away Dr. Ruchi Fitzgerald, an addiction-medicine doctor in Chicago, says some of her postpartum patients never recover from a child removal. “I can’t tell you the number of times we try to reach these mothers after their child has been removed and we can’t find them,” she says. “They’re out there using again because they’ve losthope.” 

Dr. Neeral Sheth and Dr. Celeste Napier receive the 2023 Research in Medical Education Poster

Award at the Association of Directors in Medical School Education in Psychiatry 

 Dr. Gail Basch was presented with The Award For Excellence in Addiction Leadership

Education and Mentorship; Addiction Medicine Fellowship Program at the 2023 Addiction

Medicine Fellowship Graduation Ceremony.

Dr. Nicholas Chien, MD, received the  Excellence in Clinical Education in Core Clerkships Award  a Faculty award for accomplishments related to exceptional work in medical student education.

Dr. Ruchi Fitgerald presented The Project LIFE Program (Long ActingInjectableBuprenorphine to End Overdose  at NIDA on  June 13th, 2023 

The Rush Center for Compulsive Behavior and Addiction collaborated with the Illinois Council on Problem Gambling to hold an IDPH/SUPR-supported conference on March 17, 2023 Dr. T. Celeste Napier Co-Presented How Does Gambling Addiction Happen? 

State Toolkit to End the Nation’s Drug Overdose Epidemic: Leading-Edge Actions and Strategies to Remove Barriers to Evidence-based Patient Care; Jan 2022; Delivering compassionate care for pregnant people with an SUD; “Everyone deserves humane care,” says Dr. Fitzgerald

“Benzos: What Should I know About Chill Pills ? with Gail Basch, MD” Ask Your Doctor Friends

Podcast Episode 45

“How Much Alcohol is Healthy? with Gail Basch, MD” Ask Your Doctor Friends Podcast

Episode 32

Dr. T. Celeste Napier provided the Plenary presentation for the first state (IDPH)-sponsored LatinX Conference on Problem Gambling held at Morgan College in Cicero, Il.  Our program fellow, Dr. Amanda Donald, receives the Ruth Fox Scholarship and her recognition as Scholar and receives all the benefits associated with this honor and funding support for the April 2023 ASAM meeting.

Dr. T. Celeste Napier was invited to serve on the state BehavioralHealth  Workforce Center 

(BHWC) Advisory,  created by Governor Pritzker on March 8,  2023, to “connect education, healthcare, and social service agencies statewide to grow workforce development programs for all behavioral health professions in Illinois.

Substance Use Intervention Team: Providing Evidence-Based, Compassionate Care; A

Founders Day Award Winner Story: Team of the Year; SUIT was able to adapt both the inpatient process and outpatient clinic workflow to meet patients’ needs during the pandemic by offering virtual appointments. Since the return-to-person visits, the team has added new providers to expand services for patients with substance use disorders throughout the Medical Center.

Feeling stigmatized can make people with substance use disorder less willing to seek treatment. Basch, OP-ED, Chicago Suntimes

Our program fellow, Dr.Francesco Tani, receives the Ruth Fox Scholarship and her recognition as Scholar and receives all the benefits associated with this honor and funding support for the April 2022 ASAM meeting.

Be Patient With Your Patients Dr. Nicholas Chien is our recent fellowship graduate. Now the Assistant Program Director, he closely mentors our fellows.

 Our program fellow, Dr. Nicholas Chien, receives the Ruth Fox Scholarship and her recognition as Scholar and receives all the benefits associated with this honor and funding support for the April 2021 ASAM meeting.

Raising Overdose Awareness on Chicago’s West Side/ The Overdose Crisis in Illinois: 2021 and International Overdose Awareness Day 2021

International Overdose Awareness Day (IOAD) is a global event held on August 31 each year and aims to raise awareness of overdose and reduce the stigma of a drug-related death. The day also acknowledges the grief families and friends feel, remembering those who have died or suffered permanent injuries due to drug overdose. Rush students, faculty, and community partners provided overdose reversal training and distribution of Narcan/naloxone; PPE distribution; referral to medication-assisted recovery for addiction treatment; and housing assistance.

Overcoming Barriers to Treatment of Opioid Use DisorderThe U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced a plan to publish Practice Guidelines for the Administration of Buprenorphine for Treating Opioid Use Disorder. This announcement caused enthusiasm, skepticism, and confusion in the medical community. The reaction of the plan to publish the guidelines less than two weeks later by the Biden administration has created an opportunity for fundamental and needed reform, written by Yngvild Olsen, MD, MPH, Institutes for Behavior Resources Inc., Ruchi M. Fitzgerald, MD, Associate Program Director Addiction Medicine Program at Rush, and Sarah E. Wakeman, MD, Massachusetts General Hospital online in American Medical Association Journal, February 25, 2021.

Dr. Ruchi Fitzgerald received the Attendees’ Choice Award at the 2021 Federation of State Physician Health Programs (FSPHP) Virtual Education Conference - World Disrupted: Caring for the Caregivers in Uncertain Times for her poster presentation entitled “Rewrite the Stars”: How PHPas Enhance Recovery and Foster Resiliency.”

Dr. Ruchi Fitzgerald was recently awarded a James C. Puffer, M.D./American Board of Family Medicine (ABFM) Fellow.

2nd Annual Problem & Compulsive Gambling Symposium  Centerstone and the Illinois Council on Problem Gambling (ICPG) teamed up to put on the 2nd annual Centerstone Problem and Compulsive Gambling Symposium featuring the ICPG Administrator Bill Johnson speaking about “The Stigma of Addiction.” Professor T. Celeste Napier presented the “Neuroscience of factors that contribute to gambling disorders.” 

Curbside Consultation Caring for the Physician Affected by Substance Use Disorder Dr. Ruchi M. Fitzgerald’s commentary was published in American Family Physician Journal 2021, March 1;103(5):302-304.

Naloxone Training with Continuing EducationCreated by Dr. Nicholas Chien, this 42-minute CME learning module is packed with information!

Thresholds Hero Award received by Rush Addiction Medicine FellowshipAwarded by Thresholds; presented to the Program Director and Associate Program Director at 2020 The Thresholds Annual Celebration 

Curriculum emphasizes student and physician mental health Dr. Ruchi Fitzgerald shares her positive experience with the Physicians Health Program (PHP) and talks about heightening awareness through her substance-abuse disorder (SUD) work with Rush.

Overdose spike prompts doc to speak out Dr. Ruchi Fitzgerald speaks with police and residents of her hometown, Hinsdale. She emphasizes the importance of people carrying naloxone – “You never know when you might use it and save someone’s life.”

Practice Patterns of Family Physicians With and Without Addiction This study enumerates and characterizes physicians dually certified in Family Medicine and ADM. Sebastian T Tong, Zachary J Morgan, Andrew W Bazemore, Aimee R Eden, Ruchi M Fitzgerald, Lars E Peterson.

Rise in Substance Use Due to COVID-19  Basch says, “ our addiction medicine team at Rush is ready to help.”

The Pandemic Has Forced A Mental Health Reckoning In Medicine Two key challenges in addressing physician stress have been breaking through the mental health stigma barrier and ensuring that physicians know that their licenses will not be impacted if they do seek help, says Gail Basch, a psychiatrist and associate professor who leads the internal mental health crisis response at Rush University Medical Center.

Don’t Wait To Hit Rock Bottom-Treat Alcohol Problems Before The Worst Happens Basch says, Let’s forget the bottom and take it from the top. As a clinician, my message to patients, families, friends, and fellow clinicians is a simple one: Waiting kills.

Death from Alcohol Overuse Can be Prevented with Medication Basch says,  “ Contrary to popular opinion, denial is not a primary reason people do not seek treatment. The United States’ inability to embrace the public health and medical aspects of excessive alcohol has caused shame amongst patients and confusion amongst practitioners.”

What is CBD?  Gail Basch, MD  Rush Smart Minute