Miami, FL – June 25, 2019 – Dr. Robin L. Smith, medical doctor, CEO, philanthropist and author is turning her attention to America’s opioid epidemic. The National Safety Council finds that, for the first time on record, the odds of dying from an opioid overdose in the United States are now greater than those of dying in a vehicle crash. Every day, more than 130 people in the United States die after overdosing on opioids. In 2017, that amounted to more than 47,000 American deaths from opioid overdose. The human casualties are astounding, but the total economic burden of prescription opioid misuse alone is huge: $78.5 billion a year, costing employers $10 billion in absenteeism and health care costs.
While people are focused on opioids as the villain, there is an underlying issue that needs the same type of attention, mental health. If the lack of mental health treatment is not fixed, people will find alternative ways to cope and satisfy the addiction through marijuana, alcohol, gambling, sex or even food. There are over 6 million people with binge eating disorders and obesity causes or is closely linked with a large number of health conditions, including heart disease, stroke, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, asthma, sleep apnea, gallstones, kidney stones, and as many as 11 types of cancers, including leukemia, breast, and colon cancer. Addiction is a chronic disorder that can be controlled by treating the underlying behavioral mental health disorder. Factors that increase the risk of addiction to opioids include postsurgical pain treatment, age/gender/race, type of opioid prescribed, geographic location and socioeconomic status, presence of mental illness or behavioral health diagnosis, and access to health care.
Dr. Smith always looks toward the future, using technology throughout her career to advance health. Already an international expert in regenerative medicine, she’s decided to devote her energy to a new cause: mental health.
“In order to tackle the opioid epidemic, we must offer better clinical decision support tools that can be used by practitioners, like mind-mapping; recognize and treat the symptoms of co-occurring addiction and mental illness; extend psychiatric services through physician extenders; limit the prescription of opioids; encourage individuals to seek treatment by reducing the stigma; educate both prescribers and patients; and reduce barriers to telemedicine, telepsychiatry and other digital tools, among other things,” said Dr. Smith.
Tele-behavioral health enables qualified mental health providers to deliver services using video conferencing. It has the potential to dramatically increase therapy access to people living in underserved areas or with limited access to services due to mobility, poverty or prison, along with allowing treatment through other practitioners extending the medical doctor’s footprint.
Telepsychiatry is just what it sounds like – patients can see and talk to a board-certified psychiatrist, via videoconferencing, in real time. It can expedite assessment, diagnosis, and treatment.
Dr. Smith wants to expedite treatment for people with addiction, suicidal ideation and those suffering from depression and PTSD. Using new technology and proven therapies, she believes we can revolutionize treatment of these cases.
As a dynamic storyteller and advocate, and as a doctor and business leader, she has a unique ability to increase public awareness and create new solutions for mental health and addiction treatments. As a communicator who can easily explain complex ideas to doctors, funders and the general public, Dr. Smith is an ideal candidate for addressing these heartbreaking issues.
For the cause of advancing Regenerative Medicine, she has brought together politicians, clergy, renowned scientists and A-list celebrities, and now she wants to help revolutionize mental health treatment in the United States.
Dr. Smith’s non-profit Cura Foundation launched the global health movement Unite To Cure event in 2018 at the Vatican. Pope Francis personally participated in this event, which was moderated by Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Dr. Oz, Meredith Vieira and Dr. Max Gomez; and featured an array of international celebrities, political leaders and patients. Attendees included Dr. Francis Collins, Former Vice President Joe Biden, Katy Perry, Tony Robbins, Deepak Chopra and Peter Gabriel. Dr. Smith’s 2020 Fifth International Vatican conference scheduled for May 28–30, 2020, will build on the huge success of 2018’s Unite to Cure and invite the world to join together in Unite to Prevent and Unite to Cure.
Dr. Smith received her medical degree from the Yale School of Medicine and an MBA from the Wharton School of Business and Honorary Doctorate Degree from Thomas Jefferson Medical College. She has co-authored two books: Cells Are the New Cure (2017) and The Healing Cell (2013) where the Pope wrote the forward to the book. She has received many awards and recognition for her work and serves in executive and board level capacities for medical enterprises and healthcare entities including Mynd Analytics (NASDAQ: MYND), Rockwell Medical (NASDAQ: RMTI), Seelos Therapeutics (NASDAQ:SEEL), the Cura Foundation, Sanford Health’s International Board, Alliance for Regenerative Medicine Foundation (ARM), and NYU Langone Medical Center. Dr. Smith also hosts a biweekly podcast, Health Innovation Matters, and previously had a Huffington Post column.
Dr. Robin L. Smith is driven to help humanity and to finding cures and preventions. As a doctor, biotech CEO, nonprofit leader and author, Dr. Smith is singularly positioned to foster collaboration among the stakeholders who can most impact the future and help humanity. When she sees a problem, she creates change and makes a difference. Dr. Smith is poised to have a long-lasting and powerful global impact on the development of new treatments, and attacking the opioid epidemic.
For more information on Dr. Robin L. Smith, please visit: (https://thecurafoundation.org).
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