2019 Grants

The RIZE Massachusetts Foundation’s Insights and Solutions grant program supports research that will contribute to the evidence-base and advance public policy by identifying system-level and behavior-change level considerations that can be employed toward long-term solutions to the opioid crisis in the Commonwealth. The first round of grants was awarded in November 2019.


Brandeis University

Principal Investigator:

Peter Kreiner, PhD, Senior Scientist, Institute for Behavioral Health (IBH)

Research Project:

“Racial disparities and the role of prescriber networks in the development and sustaining of buprenorphine prescribing by waivered physicians for OUD treatment in Massachusetts communities.”

The project will explore how isolated physician networks can negatively impact care coordination and information sharing among physicians. The goal of the project is to identify system-level factors associated with the development and sustaining of buprenorphine prescribing in a community, structural properties of prescriber patient-sharing networks in which waivered physicians are embedded, and how these properties vary in relation to community demographics including racial/ethnic makeup. Identifying network properties associated with greater access to OUD treatment and with increases in treatment access provides knowledge to inform system change efforts to reduce racial/ethnic disparities in access to OUD treatment.

Boston Public Health Commission

(with Institute for Community Health and Boston Medical Center)

Principal Investigators: 

Ranjani Paradise, PhD, Assistant Director of Evaluation and Research and Evaluation Scientist, Institute for Community Health (ICH) & Dan Dooley, PhD, Director, Research and Evaluation Office, Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC)

Research Project: 

“A qualitative examination of racial inequities in receipt of substance use disorder (SUD) treatment post-opioid overdose.”

The goal of the research project is to examine the experiences and service-seeking behaviors of diverse Boston residents in the 30 days following an opioid overdose in order to understand factors that influence access to treatment and identify opportunities for systems change. Guided by a research steering committee from all three institutions, this will be an in-depth qualitative study that will seek input from the people directly affected as well as key stakeholders from local health care and public health programs. The combined perspectives will allow the research team to gain a deep understanding of barriers and identify actionable recommendations. This is an applied research project, designed to generate information that can inform policy and practice change for the health care and public health systems in Boston, with the aim of improving access to substance use disorder (SUD) treatment and addressing inequities. The following key research questions will be addressed: 1. What are barriers and facilitators to accessing SUD treatment and harm reduction services for Boston residents who have experienced an opioid overdose? 2. What factors contribute to racial inequities in receipt of SUD treatment and harm reduction post-overdose? 3. How can Boston systems address barriers to improve access to SUD treatment and harm reduction services and improve health equity?

Tufts University School of Dental Medicine

Principal Investigators: 

Ronald Kulich, PhD Professor, TUSDM and David Keith, DMD, BDS

Research Project:

Controlled Substance Risk Mitigation in Dentistry: Testing a Validated Curriculum for Practicing Dentists, Dental Hygienists, and Oral Surgeons” will deliver and evaluate a series of 10 validated controlled substance risk mitigation training modules to Massachusetts practicing dentists, dental hygienists, and oral surgeons.