Opioid Use Disorder Treatment: The Peer Support Perspective with Donna Murray, DMSc, MS, PA-C & Belinda Gillespie, CPSS
The PAEA ORN-2 Clinical Sites Initiative uses multiple tools to engage PA educators, preceptors, and students about all facets of opioid use disorder (OUD) and substance use disorders (SUD). On July 12, Donna Murray, DMSc, MS, PA-C, clinical training project outreach director for ORN-2 and PAEA senior director of admissions, participated in an open and transparent conversation with Belinda Gillespie, CPSS, peer support specialist, recovery coach, and community health worker with the Mountain Area Health Education Center (MAHEC) in Asheville, North Carolina. July is National BIPOC Mental Health Awareness Month, so we asked Gillespie to offer her unique perspective as the only peer support of color in the MAHEC System. She was willing to share her story of “lived experience” with substance use disorder, six years and eight months in prison, and now supporting her “Peers” through their own journey of recovery. Belinda has faced her own roadblocks due to inequity with the system of care as it currently exists. However, she continues to strive for success through education, raising awareness, and helping others along their journey. The interview is both powerful and compelling and will provoke new thoughts about the humility and humanity of individuals with a history of OUD/SUD.
Listen to the conversation below.