Faculty Profile: Ted Nirenberg, PHD

Ted Nirenberg, PHD
Associate Professor of Psychiatry & Human Behavior (Research)
Psychiatry & Human Behavior
Work: +1 401-444-2685
Ted Nirenberg's research has focused on injury prevention and substance abuse. Recent projects have examined the effectiveness of motivational interviewing with injured patients who are seen in the emergency department (ED). He has developed a prevention program for court referred youth who have been convicted of a driving offense. He is Co-Director of the Injury Prevention Center (IPC) at RI Hospital. The IPC has received funding from several sources to fund community prevention and research projects.

Institutions

Rih

Research Description

Ted Nirenberg, Ph.D., is an associate professor (research) in the Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior and is a clinical psychologist. He received his Ph.D. from the University of North Carolina- Greensboro in 1980. Over the past five years, his research has focused on injury prevention. In particular, recent projects have examined the efficacy of motivational interviewing (MI) with subcritically injured patients who are seen in the emergency department (ED). One of the major studies he recently participated in was a large scale randomized clinical trial (RCT) intervention study for sub-critically injured drinkers (REIS) (funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH)-National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)). REIS showed that injured hazardous drinkers in the ED that received a Brief MI and a booster session had reduced negative consequences and alcohol-related injuries one year later, as compared to standard ED treatment. This finding led to an ongoing RCT study (REDUCE) that is evaluating a similar MI intervention with sub-critically injured drinkers that also use marijuana (funded by NIH-NIAAA. A third study (DIAL) examines the efficacy of a telephone delivery of brief MI that was targeted towards MVC patients identified in the ED (funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)).

Over the past several years he has received funding from the National Highway
Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RI DOT) to develop a prevention program, Reducing Youthful Dangerous Driving (RYDD), for court-referred youth who have been convicted of a driving offense. Preliminary data have suggested that RYDD is effective in reducing future driving offenses and high risk driving. Based on this data he has received funding from the CDC to further study the efficacy of this program.

In addition, over the past several years he has served as Co-Director of the Injury Prevention Center (IPC) at RI Hospital. The IPC has received funding from several sources to fund community prevention and research projects. For instance, the Providence Safe Communities Partnership (funded by RI DOT developed a partnership of community and state leaders to implement programs for reducing injuries in the enterprise communities of Providence. This led to a four-year grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to develop the Injury Free Coalition for Kids (IFCK) in Providence at Hasbro Children's Hospital. Presently we have several projects to reduce injury such as home safety, fire safety, car seat distributions, substance abuse prevention, building safe playgrounds, seat belt use, pedestrian safety, and bike helmet distribution. This has led to additional funding for a variety of projects. We also received a grant from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety to develop a statewide educational program for emergency medicine physicians on screening ED patients for alcohol use problems. A web-based program was developed and its efficacy was tested by a majority of RI ED physicians. The curriculum was assessed through periodic follow-up of self-reported data, Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) Medical Review Board data, and chart review.

Grants and Awards

Master of Arts, ad eundem, Honorary Degree, Brown University, 1992

Veterans of Foreign Wars Award for Meritorious and Distinguished Service to Veterans 1986

Veterans Administration Awards 1983,1984, 1985, 1986, 1987

Affiliations

1997- present Co Director, Injury Prevention Center, Rhode Island Hospital, Providence, Rhode Island

1997- present Director, Comprehensive Psychological Services, North Kingstown, Rhode Island

1996-present Research Scientist, Rhode Island Hospital, Providence, Rhode Island

Funded Research

1) Prevention of problem drinking in young adults (1 R01 AA 04118 01). Total funds for entire project period: $243,613.
National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), 6/80 12/82.
Principal Investigator: P.M. Miller, Co Investigator: T.D. Nirenberg

2) Conference, Directions in Alcoholism Treatment Research (R13AA05562). Total funds for entire project period $20,815.
NIAAA, 1981 1984.
Co-Principal investigators: B. McCrady, T.D. Nirenberg, and N. Noel.

3) REMC, Veterans Affairs (VA) Northport Regional Educational Medical Center (REMC) Training Grant Total funds for entire project period $2,000.
10/82 and 9/83.
Principal Investigators: T.D. Nirenberg and T. Broffman.

4) Reversibility of sexual dysfunction in chronic alcoholic males. Total funds for entire project period $168,900.
VA Merit Review Grant, 1985 1988.
Principal Investigator: J. Wincze. Co Investigator: T.D. Nirenberg.

5) Social skills training in alcoholics. Total funds for entire project period $35,000.
VA Merit Review Grant 1985-1986.
Principal investigator: P. Monti. Co-Investigator: T.D. Nirenberg.

6) Elevated blood acetaldehyde as a phenotype of alcoholism. (2R01AA05720-03A1). Total funds for entire project $125,796.
NIAAA, 1987-1989.
Principal Investigators E.B. Truitt, M.R. Liepman. Co-Investigator: T.D. Nirenberg.

7) Alcohol and substance abuse treatment intervention research training. (#AA 07459-01-1T32). Total funds for entire period $967,041.
NIAAA, 1986-1991.
Principal Investigators: D.C. Lewis and R. Longabaugh. Training Faculty Member Co-Investigator: T.D. Nirenberg.

8) Cognitive impairment after detoxification with clorazepate versus chlordiazepoxide. Total funds for entire project period $27,800.
VA Merit Review Grant 1986-88.
Principal investigator: A. Wartenberg. Co-Investigator: T.D. Nirenberg.

9) Cost effectiveness of a substance abuse day hospital program – Demonstration Project. Total funds for entire period $125,000.
VA Clinical program grant. 1987-88.
Principal Investigator: T.D. Nirenberg.

10) The effects of abstinence on the sleep of chronic alcoholics. Total funds for entire project period $49,000.
VA Merit Review Grant 1987-88.
Principal investigator: M. Engle Friedman. Co-Investigator: T.D. Nirenberg.

11) AIDS and substance abuse. Total funds for project $2,000.
AIDS Health Education Consortium (AHEC), Worcester, MA. 1989-90.
Co-Principal Investigators: A.A. Wartenberg, T.D. Nirenberg, R. Swift.

12) The effects of abstinence on the sleep of chronic alcoholics. Total funds for entire project $25,900.
VA Merit Review Grant Competitive renewal 1988-90.
Principal investigator: M. Engle Friedman. Co-Investigator: T.D. Nirenberg.

13) Early intervention program for substance abuse. Total funds for entire project $80,000.
Rhode Island (RI) Division of Substance Abuse 1989-90.
Principal Investigators: T.D. Nirenberg and D. C. Lewis.

14) Early intervention program for substance abuse. Total funds for entire project $167,898.
RI Division of Substance Abuse 1990-95.
Principal Investigator: T.D. Nirenberg

15) A multi-site matching of treatment focus to dysfunction. $2,021,953
NIAAA. 1989-1990 and 1991-1993.
Principal investigator: R.H. Longabaugh. Co-Principal Investigators: T.D. Nirenberg, W. Zwick, S. Rasmussen

16) Prevention/Treatment of substance abuse in women during pregnancy. Total funds entire project period $20,000.
RI (1077-70400-584) Division of Substance Abuse 1991-1992.
Principal Investigator: T.D. Nirenberg.

17) Project Link: A model of intervention for substance abusing pregnant and post-partum women and their infants. Total funds $20,000.
Office of Substance Abuse Prevention (1-H86-SPO2316-01A1). 1991-1996.
Principal investigator: P. Sweeney. Co-Investigator: R. Swift and T.D. Nirenberg.

18) Assessment of alcohol consumption by transdermal ethanol. Total funds entire project period $848,801.
NIAAA. 1994-1997.
Principal investigator: R. Swift. Co-investigator: T.D. Nirenberg.

19) An open label usage study of trexan as adjunctive treatment with psychosocial therapy for individuals with alcoholism. Total funds entire project period $77,000.
The DuPont Merck Pharmaceutical Company. 1994.
Principal Investigator: R. Swift; Co-Investigators: T.D. Nirenberg, J. Femino.

20) Brief intervention for alcohol positive injured patients in the emergency department. Total funds entire project period $10,000.
Brown University Center for Alcohol and Addiction Studies. 1993-1995.
Principal Investigators: T.D. Nirenberg, R. Woolard.

21) Time dynamics of alcohol treatment outcome. Total funds entire project period $12,607.
National Institutes of Health (NIH). 1994-1995.
Principal Investigator: Robert Stout; Co-Investigator: T.D. Nirenberg.

22) Emergency Department Brief Intervention for Alcohol Positive Injured Patients. Total funds entire project period $1,600,000.
NIAAA. (#R01 AA09835-01A1). 1995-1999.
Principal Investigators: R. Longabaugh, R. Woolard, T.D. Nirenberg.

23) Injury Prevention in the Emergency Department. Total funds for project period $15,000.
Amelia Peabody Foundation. 1999-2000.
Principal Investigators: T.D. Nirenberg, S. Berns, and A. Rosenthal.

24) Alcohol use, Boating and Injury. Total funds $1500.
University Emergency Medicine Foundation. 2002.
Co-Investigators: M. Mello, T.D. Nirenberg.

25) Alcohol and Marijuana Effects on Sub-critical Injury. Total funds $1,500.
University Emergency Medicine Foundation. 2002.
Co-Principal Investigators: R. Woolard, T.D. Nirenberg.

26) Reducing Youthful Dangerous Driving. Total funds $480,000.
RI Judicial and Department of Transportation. 2001-2005.
Principal Investigator: T.D. Nirenberg. Co-Investigator: M. Mello.

27) Injury Free Coalition for Kids. Total funds $215,000.
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJ 047099). 2002-2006.
Co-Principal Investigators: M. Mello, T.D. Nirenberg, L. Palmisciano.

28) Phone Intervention of Alcohol Use in Emergency Department Motor Vehicle Crash Patients. Total funds $99,824.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). 2002-2003.
Principal Investigator: M. Mello. Co-Investigator: T.D. Nirenberg.

29) Phone Intervention for Hazardous Alcohol Use in Emergency Department Motor Vehicle Crash Patients. Total funds $897,680.
CDC (R49/CCR1232280-01). 2003-2006.
Principal Investigator: M. Mello. Co-Investigator: T.D. Nirenberg

30) Reducing Injury, Alcohol, and Marijuana Use among Emergency Department Patients. Total funds $2,106,398.
NIAAA. (1R01AA13709-01A1). 2003-2007.
Principal Investigator: R. Woolard. Co-Investigator: T.D. Nirenberg.

31) Providence Safe Communities Partnership. Total Funds $100,000.
RI Department of Transportation (BO2983RIDOT). 2004-2005.
Principal Investigator: M. Mello. Co-Investigator: T.D. Nirenberg.

32) SOS: Screening for Our Safety. Total Funds: $120,000.
AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety (AAAFTS 51082). 2004-2005.
Co-Principal Investigators: M. Mello, T.D. Nirenberg.

33) Science Based Substance Abuse Prevention Program. Total Funds: $160,000.
RI Department of Mental Health, Retardation, and Hospitals (MHRH 5875). 2004-2006.
Co-Principal Investigators: L. Palmisciano, M. Mello, T.D. Nirenberg.

34) Reducing Youthful Dangerous Driving (RYDD). Total funds $890,259.
CDC (R49CE000544-01). 2005-2008.
Principal Investigator: T.D. Nirenberg. Co-Investigators: M. Mello, R. Longabaugh, R Woolard, J Baird

Selected Publications

  • Mello, MJ, Nirenberg, TD, McMahon-Downer, M, Baird, J. Screening for Our Safety (SOS): Alcohol Screening in the Emergency Department. AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, December, 2006. (2006)