STATE HEALTH LEADERSHIP: Understanding & Responding to the Lifelong Effects of Opioid Exposure for Infants, Children & Families


A Live Webcast presented by ASTHO in association with The Forum at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

The consequences of the nation’s opioid epidemic have significant impacts on America’s children and families. Harms from opioids affect infants, children and families in many ways, from the effects of opioid exposure and withdrawal on infants born to mothers using opioids to the challenge of providing stable care to children while struggling with addiction. These early childhood experiences have lifelong impacts on health and quality of life, and are also significantly impacting state services and systems including health care, addiction/substance abuse treatment, child protective services, foster care, courts, and schools.

In response to this crisis, state and territorial health officials are leading across government using multi-sector, statewide solutions to protect and support families. This live webcast event featured researchers, peer health officials, and other national leaders who addressed the effects of the opioid epidemic on children and families. Presenters offered their perspectives and shared innovative approaches to prevent ACEs relating to opioid use and to promote healthy caregiver-child relationships that help buffer the effects of trauma.


Stephen Patrick, MD, MPH, MS, Director, Center for Child Health Policy and Assistant Professor of Pediatrics and Health Policy, Division of Neonatology, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine

Karen Remley, MD, MBA, MPH, FAAP, CEO/Executive Vice President, American Academy of Pediatrics and Former Commissioner of Health, Virginia

Michael Warren, MD, MPH, FAAP, Deputy Commissioner for Population Health, Tennessee Department of Health


Monica Bharel, MD, MPH, Commissioner, Massachusetts Department of Public Health