Selected Projects

Several recent, representative CDM projects are described below.

Technical Support for the Federal Drug-Free Workplace Program (DWP)
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

Since 1991, the CDM Group, Inc. has provided scientific, technical, and administrative support for the Federal Drug-Free Workplace Program and the office responsible for regulatory and policy oversight under Executive Order 12564 and Public Law 100-71, Section 503.

Located in the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), the Division of Workplace Programs (DWP) has been delegated the primary major responsibilities for:

  • Promulgating the Mandatory Guidelines for Federal Workplace Drug Testing
  • Supporting research on drug testing science and technologies and alternative specimens
  • Convening the Drug Testing Advisory Board
  • Overseeing the National Laboratory Certification Program
  • Maintaining currency with forensic and toxicological research and knowledge

CDM has provided these services for more than 20 years, first as an 8(a) prime contractor, responsible primarily for logistical support tasks, and subsequently as the expert and technical subcontractor to another 8(a) prime. Since 2009, CDM has been the prime contractor under a competitive procurement providing:

  • Meeting support services for the Interagency Coordinating Group and Executive Committee, Drug Testing Advisory Board, and other special work groups
  • Operation of and technical assistance support for the Web-based Annual Survey Report submitted by Executive Branch agencies and data analysis and preparation of an annual report
  • Provision of training and technical assistance to federal agencies developing or updating drug-free workplace plans and to agency Drug Program Coordinators
  • Review and negotiation of drug-free workplace plans submitted for HHS certification and Reports to Congress
  • Distribution of the monthly list of laboratories certified to perform federal employee drug tests
  • Updating of the Model Plan for a Comprehensive Drug-Free Workplace Program
  • Maintenance of the archive of agency plans and related correspondence
  • Provision of expertise in forensic toxicology, forensic drug testing, labor and employment law, laboratory practices and alternative specimens, and Medical Review Officer practices.

DHS Drug-Free Workplace Plan Implementation
Department of Homeland Security

During this five-year project, CDM is providing expert and technical support to the Department of Homeland Security as it complies with the Executive Order 12564 and implements a departmental drug-free workplace program.

CDM staff and consultant experts assist the department’s Drug Program Administrator (DPA) and support the 10 Component Drug Program Coordinators (DPCs) as they prepare and implement conforming plans. Some DHS Components had been operating under legacy plans from predecessor agencies; others were new and had no implementation experience; and all needed to comply with the department’s newly certified plan.

Under this contract, CDM provides subject matter expertise in: substance abuse, medicine, psychiatry, Employee Assistance Programs, forensic toxicology, and federal workplace drug testing programs. CDM has also developed compliance and program review protocols and SOPs, and has designed and delivered workshops for the DPA and DPCs on such topics as: conducting collection site inspections; best practices in supervisory training; maximizing random factors for TDPs, overseeing laboratory performance, working with MROs, and developing data measures of program performance. In addition, CDM subject matter experts recently designed and developed a Supervisor Training Program, consisting of 12 online training modules and a final exam, all designed to provide the information and expertise required of a supervisor in a drug-free workplace.

Defense Microelectronics Activity (DMEA)
Department of Defense

Under this contract, CDM has supported DMEA in its roll-out of a newly certified drug-free workplace plan, including issuance of a 60-day general program notice in the context of an all-hands briefing for employees and a tailored supervisor seminar.

Knowledge Application Program (KAP)
Center for Substance Abuse Treatment
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)

Since 1995, CDM has held a series of contracts and subcontracts to support the development of Treatment Improvement Protocols (TIPs). From 1995 through 1999 CDM, as prime contractor, developed and produced 15 TIPs and is currently developing an additional 12 TIPs in a process that includes convening and facilitating consensus panels of subject matter and functional experts. The resulting TIPs are interdisciplinary, consensus-based, field-driven documents that include both evidence and clinical experience-based best practices to provide treatment guidelines for substance abuse treatment providers (including physicians and other health care providers). CDM also develops and produces collateral products targeted to audience subsets, including biomedical personnel. The project combines market research, product development and production, marketing, dissemination, and technical assistance to facilitate adoption and implementation of the knowledge contained in TIPs.

Alcohol Policy Information System (APIS)
National Institutes of Health
National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, HHS

The Alcohol Policy Information System (APIS) provides user-searchable Web access to authoritative, detailed, and comparable information on alcohol-related policies in the United States, at both state and federal levels (http://www.alcoholpolicy.niaaa.nih.gov/). In consultation with NIAAA, APIS staff select the policies to be included on the APIS Web site and develop the analyses to be conducted and posted. Each policy posted on the APIS Web site constitutes an indepth policy analysis including: a list of definitions (if necessary); a summary of relevant federal law (if any); tables comparing policies on that topic across jurisdictions (as of a particular date and/or over a period of time specified by the user); a brief explanation of variables used in creating these tables; notes explaining the limitations of the information provided; charts and maps; relevant statutory and regulatory citations; and references to selected federal publications. All tables may be downloaded in a format suitable for many spreadsheet and statistical programs. Although primarily intended to support grant-related research, staff have used APIS policy data to conduct and prepare research reports on policy analyses related to alcohol and pregnancy, minimum drinking ages, and state alcohol distribution systems. They have also prepared papers on the use of alcohol taxation data in econometric modeling and an extensive analysis of the role of enforcement and compliance in policy implementation, and conducted a study of databases for measuring enforcement and compliance. Three scholarly papers and the results of the database analysis (posted on the APIS Web site) informed NIAAA on possible initiatives in this area.

Sober Truth on Preventing Underage Drinking (STOP) Act
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, HHS

CDM is collecting, analyzing, synthesizing, and reporting on state-level policies and programs in support of a Congressional directive found in the Sober Truth on Preventing Underage Drinking (STOP) Act, (Pub. L. No. 109-422, § 2, 120 Stat. 2890 [2006]). The Act requires the Secretary of HHS to file an annual Report to Congress evaluating the states’ progress in preventing and reducing underage drinking. For the most recent Report to Congress, CDM prepared an analytic review of underage drinking epidemiology and consequences to provide contextual information for the analyses presented in the report, and also conducted a policy analysis of 23 state policies designed to reduce underage drinking. CDM developed conceptual structures and definitions for each policy, applied an innovative and comprehensive legal analysis of statutes and regulations in the 50 States and the District of Columbia, and developed a profile for each state. CDM also developed a Web-based survey of state practices related to enforcement of underage drinking laws; state programs (including educational programs) for youth, parents, and caregivers; information on state interagency collaborations to prevent underage drinking; and estimates of state expenditures on underage drinking initiatives. Where available, states will be asked to provide data supporting the effectiveness of their underage drinking prevention activities. CDM designed the questionnaire and placed it on an appropriate Web platform, conducted extensive pilot testing, and prepared materials for OMB approval. The survey yielded a response rate of 100 percent (all states and the District of Columbia responded). CDM also prepared tabular data reports for each state and a statistical cross-state analysis report.

Evaluation of HHS Delivery System Reform Efforts and Affordable Care Act (ACA) Provisions
Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, HHS

CDM and its subcontractor, Brandeis University, conducted an Evaluation of HHS Delivery System Reform Efforts and Affordable Care Act (ACA) Provisions to provide HHS with recommendations on a coordinated evaluation plan to tie results from the numerous Medicare, Medicaid, and Dual Eligible delivery system reform initiatives and ACA provisions into an overall model of health system change. The project’s research team combined strong technical evaluation credentials with deep experience evaluating health care markets and worked closely with delivery systems on a range of financial and organizational issues. The major focus of the research team was in developing a coordinated evaluation plan to specify a general model of health system change. The ultimate objective of the ACA delivery reform initiative was to slow the rate of health spending, improve the value of services delivered, and drive changes in the delivery system that would facilitate ongoing performance improvement, not only for Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries, but also for the overall system.

Support for Development of Epidemiological Workgroups Toolkit
Center for Substance Abuse Prevention
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, HHS

SAMHSA’s CSAP funded states, tribal organizations and other supported jurisdictions to convene an interdisciplinary group to develop an epidemiological portrait of substance abuse on which to base decisions about substance abuse prevention priorities. In 2009, CDM staff translated a series of technical assistance reports about the experience of the funded entities into a set of tools for trainers working with existing groups and with new epidemiology working groups at the community level. CDM learning systems and instructional design staff worked with our prevention systems specialists to conduct ‘good practices’ and lessons learned telephone interviews with funded organizations and to develop the toolkit format, with contents provided by subject matter experts and technical assistance staff under another contract.

Support for the Data Analysis Coordination and Consolidation Center (DACCC)
Center for Substance Abuse Prevention
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, HHS

The CSAP DACCC serves as a centralized resource for substance abuse prevention data and analysis, and is CSAP’s analytic arm and data quality assurance mechanism. CDM and Datacorp worked in partnership on the Data Management Team (DMT), responsible for cataloging, consolidating, merging, standardizing, coding, and cleaning all outcome data collected by the DACCC. This entailed managing a very large and diverse volume of data collected across nearly 200 CSAP programs and 250 grantees and contractors. Ongoing data processing included communication with CSAP grantees and contracts to resolve data discrepancies; cleaning, merging, and standardizing datasets using well defined protocols and cleaning specifications; and providing detailed data cleaning and editing documentation with analytic files and reports. The DMT delivered quality data files for analysis to the Data Analysis Team (DAT). Cleaned datasets were used by the DAT to produce regular and special reports that reported federal performance requirements (GPRA/PART/NOMs). They also served as a data resource for online analytic activities. Data documentation was stored in a state-of-the-art metadata database.

Information Support Center
National Institutes of Health
National Institute of Mental Health, HHS

From 1997–2003, CDM operated the Information Support Center, a key component of the National Institute of Mental Health’s (NIMH) continuing strategy to address the information needs of a diverse audience that ranges from the scientist to the layperson, from the professional provider to the consumer, and from the senior citizen to the elementary school child. Under this contract, CDM provided services, facilities, and qualified staff to screen and respond to inquiries received by NIMH or referred to NIMH by other government offices for reply. With consultation and assistance from NIMH staff, we worked to ensure that vitally needed information on the diagnosis, prevention, treatment, and causes of mental disorders was disseminated in a cost effective manner to members of the public and to the mental health and health care professionals responsible for their care.

Information Materials Development and Dissemination Support
National Mental Health Knowledge Exchange Network
Center for Mental Health Services
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, HHS

From 1997–2003, CDM conceptualized, wrote, designed, and produced dozens of brochures, fact sheets, information kits, state resource guides, a catalog of Center for Mental Health Services (CMHS) publications; the KEN Bulletin; speeches for CMHS officials; Director’s Reports and written remarks, and minutes for quarterly meetings of the CMHS Advisory Council. CDM also produced articles for magazines, newspapers, and journals; annotated bibliographies; custom letters as responses to inquiries (which included controlled correspondence); and print ads to be used as public service announcements. For many of these publications, CDM worked directly with CMHS officials, consumers, and media focus groups to review drafts and generate ideas to improve message and format. CDM also maintained an information database and provided clearinghouse services to people with a personal or professional interest in mental health disorders via a 1 800 telephone service and a Web-based document distribution system.

Governors’ Spouses Initiative & Leadership to Keep Children Alcohol-Free
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism
Center for Substance Abuse Prevention
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, HHS

In a series of contracts and subcontracts from 1999–2008, CDM supported the Leadership to Keep Children Alcohol-Free and the Governors’ Spouses Initiative by designing, editing, and producing materials for both professional and lay audiences. The prevention guide, Keep Kids Alcohol-Free: Strategies for Action, grew out of a consensus process involving researchers and scientists who drafted the outline of science-based prevention strategies. CDM drafted the text, identified examples and resources, and designed a guide that could be widely used by the public. This guide received honorable mention for NIH’s Plain Language Award. Examples of similar materials produced on this contract include a brochure (How to Keep Children Alcohol-Free) a series of Research Briefs (one page abstracts of current scientific studies), and two videos. CDM also developed and directly supported the Governors’ Spouses Initiative by preparing materials, synthesizing findings and best practices, and assisting spouses engaging in media outreach. CDM also designed and maintained the Web site: www.alcoholfreechildren.org.