About Us | CASAColumbia

About Us

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Ending Addiction Changes Everything

Mission and Vision

CASAColumbia informs Americans of the economic and social costs of addiction and risky substance use and its impact on their lives; assesses what works in prevention, treatment and disease management; and encourages every individual and institution to take responsibility to reduce these health problems. CASAColumbia strives to provide health care providers, policymakers and individuals with the tools they need to succeed and to remove the stigma of addiction, replacing shame and despair with hope. 

Addiction: The Unmet need

More than 1 in 7 Americans ages 12 and older have addiction involving nicotine, alcohol or other drugs.   

Major advances in neuroscience, brain imaging and behavioral research show that addiction can be thought of as a complex brain disease affecting behavior. However, it is often viewed as a moral failing due to lack of willpower, and therefore, not treated as a medical illness. Those living with addiction, and their families, often feel isolated in their struggle to understand the disease and find effective treatment. This is due in part to the shame and stigma attached to addiction and to the separation of most treatment from mainstream health care practice.  

Over 200

More than 200 published articles—including articles, book chapters and commentaries by CASAColumbia researchers.

“I applaud CASAColumbia’s exemplary role in building communities free from the devastation of alcohol and drug abuse.

Your compassionate service empowers people and gives them the hope and purpose they need to succeed.”
—President Barack Obama

What Does CASAColumbia Do?

CASAColumbia works to:
  • Close the enormous gap between what we know about addiction and what we actually do to prevent and treat it
  • Incorporate addiction prevention and treatment into routine health care and medical practice
  • Explore the possibility of finding a cure

CASAColumbia is a science-based organization focused on developing effective solutions to address the disease of addiction and risky substance use. It was founded in 1992 by Joseph A. Califano, Jr., former U.S. Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare. 

CASAColumbia is committed to understanding the science of addiction and its implications for health care, public policy and public education.  

Want to learn more about us?

To learn more about CASAColumbia, download our brochure.