Studying the PhilAdelphia Resilience Project as a Response to Overdose (SPARROw) Funded by the CDC, mPI with Dr. Zack Meisel
The City of Philadelphia has the second highest opioid overdose death rate in the United States. In response, Philadelphia has developed an overarching overdose prevention strategy, the Resilience Project, which includes both services targeted toward people who use opioids and neighborhood environment interventions that address the blighted conditions where most overdoses occur. The objective of this proposal, Studying the PhilAdelphia Resilience Project as a Response to Overdose (SPARROw), is to leverage a natural experiment to evaluate the effectiveness and implementation of two highly innovative Resilience Project programs targeted at the time and place of opioid overdose: (1) the Alternative Response Unit (ARU) that accompanies ambulances responding to overdoses and aims to deliver harm reduction and care linkage to people who refuse hospital transport, and (2) blight remediation of abandoned buildings and land.
The Impact of Abandoned House Remediation on Self-Reported and Biologically-Measured Stress
The places where people live, work, and play have increasingly gained recognition as sources of poor health and persistent disparities. One aspect of place is urban blight – dilapidated and run down spaces and buildings often concentrated in low-resources neighborhoods. An estimated 15% of urban space in the US is abandoned, becoming run down and blighted over time. Abandoned housing is linked to poor physical and mental health outcomes, a relationship that may be mediated by a common pathway: chronic stress. Stress is protective in the short term, but when chronic, it can result in long-term biologic changes and poor health. The fundamental hypothesis of this study is that simple neighborhood physical environment changes can improve health for local residents. The broad objective of the study was to evaluate if a standard, protocolized abandoned house remediation strategy reduces self reported and biologically measured chronic stress. This pilot study was embedded within a NIAAA funded trial studying the impact of abandoned house remediation on substance use and crime (mPI Mcdonald and Branas).
Sample before and after abandoned house “doors and windows” intervention developed by the City of Philadelphia