Governor Northam Announces the Appointment of Dr. James Thompson to the Opioid Abatement Authority
Virginia Governor Ralph Northam has appointed Dr. James Thompson, co-founder and chief medical officer at Master Center, to the Opioid Abatement Authority. The Authority, with the assistance of the Office of the Attorney General, was created in 2021 to administer the Opioid Abatement Fund to help ensure that funds from opioid litigation are used for opioid abuse prevention, treatment, and recovery. The Opioid Abatement Authority makes Virginia one of the first states in the nation to have a legislatively enacted framework for directing funds from opioid litigation toward recovery, instead of diverting funds to other uses.
“It’s clear that lives have been tragically impacted across the Commonwealth, and that our communities have been needlessly devastated, due to the current opioid crisis,” said Dr. Thompson. “Master Center commends the Commonwealth of Virginia for taking a step forward in combating the opioid crisis by forming this collaborative effort to ensure that the majority of the funds from judgments and settlements go back to the community to fight the opioid epidemic.”
Since 2016, Dr. Thompson has focused on an evidence-based, organized, system-wide response to the disease of addiction through the launch of Master Center. Dr. Thompson, who is one of Richmond’s first board-certified addiction medicine physicians to be named a Fellow of the American Society of Addiction Medicine, co-founded Master Center (then known as Virginia Center for Addiction Medicine) with the late Dr. Sherman Master, a renowned pioneer in addiction psychiatry and one of the most trusted and respected physicians in the region. It is the first physician-led practice to hire and fully utilize recovery coaches as personal patient helpers, guides, teachers, and care navigators. Since that time, Master Center has earned a reputation as the premier outpatient addiction treatment center setting a new standard of care for patients suffering from the disease of addiction.
As Master Center has grown, the organization has attracted other medical leaders committed to the center’s evidence-based approach to healing and added new locations throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia – including its headquarters in Richmond, Virginia, and offices in Hampton and Gloucester.