Skip to main content
Browse by:

Religious Communities, Clergy, and Constructive Responses to Substance Use Issues: Challenges and Opportunities

Dr. Brett McCarty
Thursday, July 28, 2022
3:30 pm - 4:30 pm
Brett McCarty, ThD
Population Health Sciences Research Seminar

Historically, many religious responses to substance use issues have been marked by stigma; stigma also often marks both sides of the relationship between religious and medical responses. Overcoming these dynamics often requires the cultivation of relationships and trust on both ends. In Dr. McCarty's research seminar, he will discuss

• How communication problems hinder responses to substance use issues and how improving communication must include attention to community-specific needs.

• How religious communities and clergy often want to be a part of more constructive responses to substance use issues, but a key sticking point is an openness to both medical and spiritual accounts of substance use issues.

• How diverse religious communities require different modes of collaboration, intensifying some of the challenges of developing, disseminating, and evaluating interventions.

• How both challenges and opportunities for this work are growing with increased rates of substance use issues, political polarization, and disbursements of opioid settlement funds.

Dr. Kevin Weinfurt will be the discussant.

This event is offered in person and via Zoom:
Meeting ID: 932 6997 3793
Passcode: 697400

About Our Speaker
Brett McCarty, ThD is Assistant Professor in Population Health Sciences in the School of Medicine's Department of Population Health Sciences and Assistant Research Professor of Theological Ethics at Duke Divinity School, where he is the Associate Director of the Theology, Medicine, and Culture Initiative. He is also a faculty fellow at the Kenan Institute for Ethics and a faculty associate at the Trent Center for Bioethics, Humanities & History of Medicine.

As a theological ethicist and qualitative researcher, Dr. McCarty seeks to address two major public health questions-the opioid crisis and the career sustainability of healthcare practitioners-by researching and implementing collaborations between healthcare systems and religious communities. His current research projects focus on religious responses to substance use issues, competing conceptions of agency within the modern hospital, and ways to promote racial justice through inter-professional education programs and translational research with religious communities.

Contact: Wendy Goldstein