International Projects

International Training Program for
United Nations Global Network of
Drug Abuse Treatment Centers

Richard A. Rawson, Ph.D., Principal Investigator (
Walter Ling, M.D., Co-Investigator
Anne Bellows, M.S.W., Project Director

In December 2005, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) launched the “International Network of Drug Dependence Treatment and Rehabilitation Resource Centres,” a global initiative to address the growing demand for accessible and quality drug treatment and rehabilitation services and HIV/AIDS prevention and care. UCLA ISAP was chosen as the lead center for the capacity building arm of this effort. This project addresses the disparate technical capacity of many regions of the world to provide diversified and effective drug treatment and rehabilitation services. ISAP is coordinating the effort to deliver a multivolume training package to the Network. The ultimate goal is to increase the capacity of the treatment centers to deliver a variety of treatment and rehabilitation interventions in all represented regions over the next 2 years.

The Network of Resource Centres, under ISAP’s coordination, has assessed the training/capacity-building needs of the regions represented by Network members. ISAP has used the knowledge gained from these needs assessments to develop a series of capacity building training volumes. Initial priority areas that will be included in the volumes are substance abuse assessment, psychosocial interventions, and pharmacotherapies. These volumes are designed to train service providers in a “training of trainers” method. The first providers trained will subsequently train a second generation of service providers in their own regions.  (Additional information is available at

International Training Program for United Nations Global Network of Drug Abuse Treatment Centers was funded by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, Grant 05-673 (December 2005 through May 2007).

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A Substance Abuse Monitoring System
for Egyptian and Israeli Communities

Richard A. Rawson, Ph.D., Principal Investigator (
Richard Isralowitz, Ph.D. (Ben Gurion University), Nasser Loza, M.B.CH.B., M.Sc.,D.P.M., FR.C.Psych (The Behman Hospital), & Ahmed El-Dosoky, M.B.CH.B., MSc., MRC Psych (The Behman Hospital), Co-Investigators
Albert L. Hasson, M.S.W., Project Director

Drug use in Egypt and Israel appear to be considerable, though minimal data document this significant issue in both countries. This scarcity of data makes it virtually impossible to develop interventions, be they preventive, educational, treatment-oriented, or interdictive in nature. The primary research objective of this project is to create a data collection infrastructure, similar to the Community Epidemiology Workgroup (CEWG) developed by the U.S. National Institute on Drug Abuse, in several cities in Israel and within several communities in Cairo, Egypt. A multinational team of scientists from Egypt, Israel, the United States, and the United Nations was brought together to create the work plan for this project. Using the Addiction Severity Index (ASI), developed by Tom McLellan of the University of Pennsylvania, as the primary tool for data collection in Israel and an adapted version of the ASI, the Egyptian Addiction Severity Index (EASI), to be used in Egypt, data collected will be compared across sites in Israeli and Egyptian communities, and may be compared with several hundred programs participating in the Drug Evaluation Network System (DENS) in the United States. To date, data have been collected on nearly 2,000 substance abuse treatment admissions.  Once completed, the analysis and subsequent dissemination of the results should prove to be invaluable to the Israeli and Egyptian health ministries when allocating resources.

A Substance Abuse Monitoring System for Egyptian and Israeli Communities was funded by the United States Agency for International Development, Grant TA-MOU-02-M23-010 (December 2002 through December 2006).

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Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Training Project in the Republic of South Africa (CBTTPRSA)

Donnie Watson, Ph.D., Principal Investigator (
Solomon Rataemane, M.D., Medical University of South Africa, & Richard Rawson, Ph.D., Co-Investigators
Lusanda Rataemane, M. Sc., & Jason McCuller, M.A., Project Directors

The goal of this project is to assess the efficacy of three training approaches on Republic of South Africa (RSA) clinicians’ ability to adhere to the core elements of a research-based model for individual cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) that is adapted for use in RSA. These methods include: (1) An in-vivo (IV) CBT program in which clinicians receive training and supervision from an expert trainer; (2) A distance learning (DL) training and supervision approach via a teleconferenced and interactive broadcast with the same expert trainer; and  (3) A self-instructional-manual-only approach (MO). (Additional information is available at

CBTTPRSA was funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, Grant DA019063 to Friends Research Institute, Inc. (September 2005 through June 2010).

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Middle East Peace-Building Through Cooperative Epidemiology

Darren Urada, Ph.D., Principal Investigator
Richard Rawson, Ph.D., Co-Investigator
Valerie Pearce, B.A., Project Director

Prominent substance abuse experts from 23 countries gathered in Istanbul, Turkey, on Sept. 5-7, 2005, to share information on the substance abuse challenges facing their countries and regions, to promote regional cooperation on substance abuse issues, and to discuss the integration of substance abuse treatment services with primary care, mental health, and social service systems in countries with developing systems. Many of the participants in attendance came from areas of the world that have histories of conflict with each other, including Iraq, Iran, Israel, Palestine, Afghanistan, Russia, and the United States. However, these participants set aside cultural and political differences to create a cooperative and productive atmosphere in which to discuss science-based answers to substance abuse challenges. While the presentations formed the core of the conference, the dialogues emerging outside of the conference room were just as important. It was not uncommon to witness Middle Eastern participants having a lively debate about the Israeli-Palestinian situation and then have that conversation turn to shared solutions to substance abuse problems. Both anecdotal evidence and feedback on a survey at the end of the conference suggest that many participants intend to pursue professional cooperation based on discussions and contacts made at the conference. UCLA is continuing to build on the conference through cooperation with international partners and information dissemination. (Additional information is available at

Middle East Peace Building through Cooperative Epidemiology was funded by the U.S. Institute of Peace, Grant SG-233-03F (June 2004 through November 2005 ).

Last Updated: 02/01/2007

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2016 ISAP Publications
2015 ISAP Publications