News story

Drugs Recovery Adviser appointed by Public Health England

Internationally recognised addiction expert Dr A Thomas McLellan will provide independent advice on PHE’s work to tackle the problem of drug misuse.

Tom McLellan is the CEO and co-founder of the Treatment Research Institute (TRI), a non-profit research and development organisation dedicated to improving substance misuse policies and programmes.

From 2009 to 2010 he served as Deputy Director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), where he was a driving force behind Barack Obama’s National Drug Control Strategy which combined public health and public safety approaches to reduce drug use and its consequences.

Over a 35 year research career Tom McLellan has published over 400 articles and from 2000 to 2009 was Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment. He has received numerous awards for his contributions to the field, including the Life Achievement Award of the American Society of Addiction Medicine.

PHE Director of Health and Wellbeing Professor Kevin Fenton said:

We are delighted to have secured the expert advice of Tom McLellan and the Treatment Research Institute to support PHE’s work to tackle the problem of drug misuse and meet the recovery ambition of the 2010 Drug Strategy. As an internationally recognised authority on addiction treatment and recovery, he will provide immensely valuable input to our developing programmes of work and to the continued building of the evidence base.

Tom McLellan said:

On behalf of myself and my colleagues at the Treatment Research Institute, it is an honor and a privilege to be working with Public Health England to support their important efforts to reduce the enormous burden of addiction on individuals and communities. Scientific advances now make it possible to prevent substance abuse from starting; to intervene early and stop emerging substance abuse; and to effectively treat even serious addictions using new medications and therapies. By putting this research into practice, PHE is establishing an evidence-based system that will improve outcomes for all affected stakeholders.

Based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the Treatment Research Institute is an independent, not for profit research and development organisation dedicated to science-driven reform of treatment and policy in substance misuse. Among its current projects is the development of a ‘Consumer Guide’ to evaluate quality in substance misuse treatment programmes.