2024 SAEMF/RAMS Resident Research Grant - $5,000

"Enhancing Emergency Department Distribution of Drug Checking Tools"

More Americans are dying of overdose than ever before, partly because street drugs contain unknown substances. Xylazine test strips -- small pieces of paper that people can use to check if their drug contains the veterinary tranquilizer xylazine -- are one tool to potentially reduce overdose, but are not commonly given out in hospitals. Our project studies emergency departments (EDs) giving these tools out to their patients. Studies like this, which aim to examine the feasibility and acceptability of ED-distributed Xylazine test strips, are necessary to inspire broader adoption of ED drug checking tool distribution, which may in turn impact substance use behavior and potentially morbidity and mortality associated with drug supply contaminants.


  • Marina Gaeta Gazzola, MD

    New York University Grossman School of Medicine

    "Enhancing Emergency Department Distribution of Drug Checking Tools"

    Dr. Gazzola is a resident physician in the department of emergency medicine at NYU Langone Health/Bellevue Hospital Center in New York and a post-doctoral research associate at the APT Foundation Inc., a not-for-profit, low-barrier opioid treatment program based in New Haven, Connecticut. She is a graduate of the Yale School of Medicine and Cornell University. Her scholarship investigates the intersection of social determinants of health and opioid use disorder; emergency department-based harm reduction interventions; and patient language preferences and stigma surrounding substance use disorders.