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Member Spotlight: NME Members Present on Drug Overdose Prevention Evaluation at AEA


New 2019 NME member Megan Deissinger are evaluators for the New Mexico Department of Health (NMDOH) Drug Overdose Prevention Program. 

As a public health professional, Aimee’s goal is to help strengthen health and social systems to provide individuals with the education, resources and support needed to minimize the burden of disease and live healthy, productive lives. Prior to joining NMDOH, Aimee’s work included monitoring and evaluation of community-based maternal and child health programming in Zambia and managing mobile-based development initiatives in Cambodia and Indonesia. Working in an M&E capacity allows her to touch all aspects of programming and understand the system as it truly functions. Aimee writes, “I am keen to help organizations and programs use this research and learning to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of their initiatives.” At AEA, Aimee will be speaking to the efforts by NMDOH and its implementing partners to reduce high-risk prescribing of opioids through Academic Detailing. Using information gathered from survey data, as well as key-informant interviews, she will share recommendations to leverage assets identified from the current program, in addition to suggestions on overcoming program challenges. 

Megan previously worked on HIV and Viral Hepatitis prevention programs in Colorado and has delivered public health interventions in East Africa. Professionally, she remains interested in global health, and enjoys practicing applied epidemiology/evaluation at NMDOH. Megan enjoys demonstrating achieved results through evaluation, and appreciates being able to improve the reach and impact of public health programs. Megan is looking forward to discussing the preliminary results of a policy evaluation at this year's annual American Evaluators Association Conference, and also hopes to learn new skills she can bring back to her work at NMDOH. 

Megan and Aimee will be presenting at AEA on Friday afternoon at 5:45 pm during the panel session “Using Multiple Evaluation Methods to Assess and Enhance Prevention Efforts Addressing the Opioid Epidemic: Recent Experience from New Mexico.” The session will be chaired by Kathryn Lowerre, also of NMDOH and an NME Board Member, who will be presenting on evaluation work with the NM Board of Pharmacy’s Prescription Monitoring Program. The session respondent will be Kerry Zaleski of the University of Wisconsin. If you’re planning to be in Minneapolis, we hope to see you there!

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