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University of Southern California
University of Southern California
USC Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy
USC Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy
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News and Events
News and Events

Katie Jordan joins national expert panel on opioid use disorder
May 17, 2019

Jordan is the only occupational therapist on 25-member panel reporting on opioid-related healthcare quality measures to inform federal programs.

Associations and Bodies Clinical Faculty Lifestyle Redesign

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By Mike McNulty

Photo by rawpixel.com

Opioid-related overdose deaths have increased during the past decade in epidemic proportions — nearly 50,000 Americans died in 2017 due to both prescription and illicit opioid use. It’s an alarming problem with complex causes, and organizations and providers alike are scrambling to offer better solutions.

To help providers, payers and policymakers speak the same language as they work together toward common goals, the National Quality Forum — a Washington, DC-based nonprofit organization — has assembled a panel of healthcare and behavioral health experts, including one of USC’s own.

Katie Jordan, USC Chan’s associate chair of clinical services and a clinical professor, has been appointed to NQF’s 25-member Opioid and Opioid Use Disorder Technical Expert Panel. Over the next year, the group will conduct a scholarly and practical environmental scan to report on the current state of opioid-related healthcare quality measures. Such measures are used by various federal programs to assess care service quality, and the report will offer its recommendations for the future.

“Occupational therapists intimately understand how much chronic pain can impact daily activities and lifestyle choices, and we offer feasible, practical solutions to empower people for better managing their pain in the real-world in order to avoid or reduce the opioid option,” Jordan said.

Jordan is the only occupational therapist on the NQF Technical Expert Panel, which includes physicians, psychologists, pharmacists, nurses and social workers.

In addition to Jordan’s clinical expertise in Lifestyle Redesign — an occupation-based intervention process that guides clients through building a customized plan for long-term routine and habit changes — she is heavily involved in national policy and reimbursement through organizations like the American Medical Association’s Relative Value Update Committee.

She knows that occupational therapy has valuable contributions to make not only at the national policy level, but also at the individual level, even if those individuals together comprise the more than 11 million Americans who misuse and abuse opioids.

“The opioid issue is one of today’s gravest healthcare and public policy challenges, but I’m grateful to represent occupational therapy’s voice and the vital role that we play in helping people lead healthier, happier lives.”