African & Middle Eastern Congress on Addiction (AMECA)

AMECA Program

The schedule at a glance is here.


The conference booklet is here.


Journal special issue announcement here.


Plenary Speakers

Jallal Toufiq, MD (University of Rabat/Arrazi Hospital Salé)
Jallal Toufiq MD Dr. Jallal Toufiq received specialization degree in psychiatry at the Rabat School of Medicine. Dr. Toufiq completed many fellowships in Psychiatry in France. He was a NIDA research fellow at Johns Hopkins University School of Public Health in 1994 and 1995, and was appointed as an associate Professor in Psychiatry in 1997. Dr. Toufiq contributed to the creation of the first center for drug abuse treatment in 1999. He took over the Director position of the University Psychiatric Hospital in Salé in 2005, became the Moroccan Representative at the Mednet Network of the Pompidou Group in 2006 and Permanent Correspondent for Morocco at the Pompidou Group / the Council of Europe, and co-founded the Middle East and North Africa Harm Reduction Association (MENHARA). In 2011, Dr. Toufiq was appointed as the Director of the newly created National Observatory on Drugs and Addictions, and he served as expert and consultant for many organizations such as the WHO, the UNODC, the ICAA, the Council of Europe. Starting March 2015, Dr. Toufiq will be taking over as a new member of the UN International Narcotic Control Bureau in Vienna. Dr. Toufiq has chaired and participated in many committees and commissions, nationally and internationally in the field of drug abuse.  He also served as the Minister of Health advisor for mental health and drug abuse issues.  Dr. Toufiq teaches at the University of Rabat Faculty of Medicine.  He founded and still runs the University Diploma in Addictology at the University of Rabat, and participates in teaching activities regarding drug abuse in some European and African countries.
Dr. Toufiq will provide a plenary talk titled “Overview of the Situation of Harm Reduction in the MENA Region” at the 2014 AMECA. Dr. Toufiq will also be a panelist in a panel discussion titled Opioid Use in Addiction Treatment



Richard A. Rawson, Ph.D. (UCLA)

Richard A. Rawson, PhD

Richard A. Rawson, Ph.D., is an Associate Director of UCLA Integrated Substance Abuse Programs and Professor-in-Residence at the UCLA Department of Psychiatry, where he has been a member for more than 30 years. Dr. Rawson oversees clinical trials on pharmacological and psychosocial addiction treatments and has an extensive portfolio of work in the area of substance use disorder service development and evaluation. He leads addiction research, training and system development initiatives for the United Nations, the World Health Organization, and the U.S. State Department, exporting science-based addiction service knowledge to many parts of the world.  Dr. Rawson has published 6 books, 35 book chapters, and over 200 peer-reviewed articles and has conducted over 1,000 workshops, paper presentations, and training sessions.
Dr. Rawson will chair a panel discussion titled Opioid Use in Addiction Treatment and a symposia titled Integrated Substance Abuse Programat the 2014 AMECA.



Scott J. Leischow, Ph.D. (Mayo Clinic)

Scott J. Leischow, PhD

Dr. Scott J. Leischow, Ph.D., joined the Mayo Clinic in 2012 where he leads the Tobacco Control Research within the Mayo Clinic Cancer Center and the Health Equity Research Initiative in Arizona.  He was formerly Associate Director at the University of Arizona Cancer Center, and before that served as Senior Advisor for Tobacco Policy in the US Department of Health and Human Services and Chief of the Tobacco Control Research Branch at the National Cancer Institute of NIH.   Dr. Leischow completed his doctorate in Health Education from the University of Maryland, and a postdoctoral fellowship in Behavioral Pharmacology from Johns Hopkins University.  Dr. Leischow has received several awards, including the NIH Director’s Award. Most of Dr. Leischow’s research and publications focus on pharmacologic and behavioral treatments for tobacco dependence, along with systems and network approaches to public health.   Dr. Leischow is past President of the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco (SRNT).
Dr. Leischow will provide a plenary talk titled Mapping the Network of Tobacco Treatment Training in Africa and the Middles East: Network Analysis of an International Healthcare Professional Training Network as well as a paper titled Research priorities to advance the FCTC: opportunities and challenges for Africa and the Middle East” at the 2014 AMECA.



Michel Fouad Soufia, MD, MS (USEK)

Michel F. Soufia MD

Dr. Michel Soufia graduated as a Psychiatrist from Saint Joseph medical school in Lebanon, with a specialized training in Psychiatry from Paris 7 Medical School. Dr. Soufia also received a Diploma in Psychiatric and Organic Comorbidities from Paris 6 Medical School and a Diploma in Addictions, Forensic medicine, and iCognitive and Behavioral Therapy. Dr. Soufia has completed his Masters in basic science and research. He is currently a lecturer in psychiatry at USEK faculty of medicine. Beside his private practice Dr. Soufia has admitting and procedural privileges in 2 psychiatric units in Lebanon, is the mental health advisor for International Medical Corps (IMC) Lebanon, and is a psychiatric consultant in Skoun Lebanese addiction center. He has published several articles in international journals.
Dr. Soufia will be a panelist in a panel discussion titled “Opioid Use in Addiction Treatmentat the 2014 AMECA.



Desirée Crèvecoeur-MacPhail, Ph.D. (UCLA)

Desiree Crevecoeur-MacPhail PhD
Desirée Crèvecoeur-MacPhail (pronounced Krev-uh-koor - Mak-fail), Ph.D. received her doctorate from Claremont Graduate University in Social Psychology and master's degree in clinical psychology from Pepperdine University. She has been employed at UCLA’s Integrated Substance Abuse Programs (ISAP) for over a 14 years.  She is currently Principal Investigator of Los Angeles County Evaluation System: An Outcomes Reporting Program (LACES) at UCLA-ISAP. As part of her work at UCLA-ISAP, she has been responsible for the examining engagement and retention in substance use disorder treatment programs and assisting the county in the development of a performance based management system. She is the author of over a dozen papers and book chapters on topics such as: the treatment system in Los Angeles County, methamphetamine use, effects of withdrawal on the body, how addiction affects the brain, addiction medications, the rise in use of methamphetamine for a number of special populations including American Indians and Latinos, addiction treatment and health disparities, aspects of drug treatment effectiveness, drug treatment services, and program evaluation. Dr. Crèvecoeur-MacPhail has managed several pilot projects on drug abuse treatment, most recently a pilot examining the implementation of an opioid antagonist medication into the treatment system in Los Angeles County.  She also works with federally qualified health centers (FQHCs) to assess and improve treatment integration.  She has a wide experience in health research, including quantitative and qualitative methods and outcomes measurement.
In addition to research, Dr. Crèvecoeur-MacPhail has taught at a number of colleges and universities including UCLA, Cal State University Dominguez Hills, Chapman University and Claremont Graduate University.
Dr. Crèvecoeur-MacPhail will present a paper titled Use of Performance Measures to Monitor and Measure the Effectiveness of Treatment Services in a symposium titled “Integrated Substance Abuse Program” at the 2014 AMECA.



Mary-Lynn Brecht, Ph.D. (UCLA)

Mary-Lynn Brecht PhD

Mary-Lynn Brecht, Ph.D. Dr. Brecht is a researcher and statistical support specialist for the UCLA Integrated Substance Abuse Programs. She is currently conducting a long-term follow-up of methamphetamine users to study use and recovery trajectories and long-term outcomes of treatment. Other research topics have included HIV risk behaviors among methamphetamine users, epidemiologic trends of substance use, and needs assessment for substance use services. She directs the Statistical Support core for the ISAP Center for Advancing Longitudinal Drug Abuse Research. She is also an adjunct professor in the UCLA School of Nursing where she directs the Research Office Design and Data Core and teaches multivariate statistics. She has had extensive training and experience in the development/adaptation, application, and integration of quantitative methods, particularly those for longitudinal analyses, with emphasis in the areas of drug-abuse, health systems, and treatment evaluation research.
Dr. Brecht will present a paper titled Use of the CEWG Model to Monitor Emerging Trends in Substance Use Prevalence and Consequences to Assist with Policy and Action Effortsin a symposium titled “Integrated Substance Abuse Program” at the 2014 AMECA.