Agency Action Plan to Address Substance Use

Substance use is a complex problem with devastating and lasting effects across the lifespan. It strains our families, it ravages our communities, and threatens the well-being of our entire state. While opioids are still cause for concern, trends on the use of methamphetamines, marijuana, other illicit drugs, and alcohol cannot be ignored.

As the state agency entrusted with improving the health, safety, and well-being of Texas, DSHS is committed to addressing substance use.

A 3-year DSHS action plan to address substance use in Texas was launched in 2020. The plan was coordinated by the Community Health Improvement Division and developed in collaboration with partners and stakeholders. Implementation has been a tremendous success and progress continues as a part of DSHS programming.

The plan describes actions in three key public health focus areas.

Action Plan 
Accessible Action Plan

Looking for substance use information, treatment, services or resources?

Health Education Design

Ideas built to inspireCreating a new platform for sharing knowledge in ways that inspire is also part of the DSHS agency action plan to address substance use.

Health Education Design (HED) aims to do that with the help of Technology, Entertainment and Design (TED) talks. TED talks share knowledge about topics that matter. TED talks transform thinking and teach important life lessons in powerful and profound ways.

While the plan was to launch a TED-like HED talk series with ideas built to inspire, the challenges of COVID-19 call for an alternative approach. That’s where TED talks come in. DSHS invites you to watch, listen, and learn. Each one of these TED talks shares important ideas about improving health, beginning with the topic of substance use.

Ending the Opioid Crisis
Dr. Jennifer Potter | TEDxSanAntonio

Shaming the Sick: Substance Use and Stigma
Dr. Carolyn Greer | TEDxFortWayne

In the Opioid Crisis, Here's What It Takes to Save a Life
Jan Rader | TEDWomen 2018

Continuing Education Related to Substance Use

DSHS compiled a list of continuing education (CE) and continuing medical education (CME) for health professionals. Health professionals can use these resources to find continuing education related to substance use.

DSHS Continuing Education provides CME, nursing education (CNE), and pharmacy education (CPE) as well as other health professionals such as counselors, social workers, and psychologists.

Texas Health Steps provides CE accredited courses and tutorials for physicians, nurses, social workers, pharmacist, dentists, and other health professionals.

Additional Substance Use Resources for Health Professionals