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Addiction Treatment Software in Camden

Revitalization of Camden. High On The List Is Addiction.

revitalization-of-camden-addiction-treatment June 2016 – According to a 2015 article published on NJ.com, New Jersey’s fatal overdose rate was up to three times the national average.¹ The rates in Camden continue to soar above the already astounding numbers reported for other NJ counties.² As the nation continues to fully realize and act on the monumental drug addiction problem, Camden has been no stranger to absorbing the consequences. Coupled with the out of control drug activity, this county has come to be known as one of the most dangerous in America.³

Some officials argue that the worst of days are behind them, but nevertheless there is a lot more work to be done. In a documentary by The Daily, a group of residents gave their own accounts of what it is really like living in that area. Most businesses, like restaurants, grocery stores, and hotels have long been closed leaving behind abandoned buildings. Walking along the street is safe for no one, as one woman attested before mentioning that her cousin what gunned down just two days prior. The issues of violence and drug addiction are undoubtedly closely correlated.

Tackling one the the two major issues, addiction treatment facilities are steadfastly operating in some of the most affect areas. A once a shunned and misunderstood form of addiction treatment is now being gratefully embraced in Camden and around the country. Medication-assisted treatment facilities, like Urban Treatment Associates, employ the use of medications like methadone or buprenorphine to help stabilize patients seeking recovery. Increasing and maintaining the availability if treatment is essential to the revitalization of Camden.

  1. Heroin overdose rate triples…
  2. NJ heroin crisis
  3. Local city named most dangerous in US
  4. Getting clean in Camden
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Controversial Solution. What We Need to Do is Save Lives.

Boston-Health-Care-for-the-Homeless-ProgramMay 2016 – The Boston Globe reported on a new unorthodox measure that has been taken by Boston Healthcare to prevent overdose deaths. Fatigued and frustrated by multiple overdose occurrences in their waiting rooms each week, Boston Health Care for the Homeless has opened a place specifically to care for these overdose victims. The SPOT (Supportive Place for Observation and Treatment), is a repurposed room in their facility that is staffed by an addiction nurse and case manager. They provide a safe and medically monitored place for people to go for help as they are coming down from a high. The goal is to contribute to the reduction of overdose deaths in the Boston area.²

This solution has received some tough criticisms. Nurse practitioner at Boston Medical Center and the Gavin Foundation Brianne Fitzgerald believes, “It’s ridiculous… it’s one of the highest forms of enabling, and it gives up hope on people who use IV drugs.” However, others still point to the notion of trying different methods to at least help reduce overdose numbers. “…with the level of pandemic we’re dealing with — and I say pandemic because it’s no longer just an epidemic — any effort to get this problem under control is a worthwhile experiment.” said former state senator Steven Tolman.² Read the full article or learn more about SPOT.

1.) https://www.bhchp.org/news/planned-spot-center-780-albany-street]

2.) https://www.bostonglobe.com/business/2016/04/25/overwhelmed-overdose-epidemic-health-clinic-offers-room-for-supervised-highs/vQ61K3jao0vXNUPHK0iQhP/story.html

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ETS Opens New Clinic to Aid Overdose Stricken County

ETS-Opens-New-ClinicApril 2016 – Evergreen Treatment Services (ETS) has offered medication-assisted treatment for adults with opioid use disorder since 1973. This August they plan to open their newest location, a 350 patient facility in Renton, King County, Washington. This new addition comes on the heels of a 58% increase in heroin related deaths in 2015.¹ Assistant Division Director of King County Behavioral Health and Recovery Division Brad Finegood noted that the opening of this clinic is a direct result of the overwhelming need for more treatment facilities in the area. “The problem is growing faster than our ability to build new facilities.”² ETS CEO, Molly Carney, said that methadone and buprenorphine as well as counseling services is a crucial part of treatment for those addicted to opioids.²

However, just offering this services does not solve the larger societal problem of public stigma. Time and time again we see instances of people fighting against the opening of clinics in their respective communities. Business owners and residents often feel concerned when they hear of the possibility of a medication-assisted treatment facility (often misleadingly referred to as just “methadone clinics”) opening near them for fear that an increase in criminal activity will follow. In a Philadelphia Daily News report on a proposed clinic opening they quoted one resident as saying, “We’re not gonna tolerate the existence of this establishment…No community is an appropriate place for a methadone clinic.”³   The sentiment “not in my back yard” is commonly applied to treatment clinic openings. Logically, it should instead be applied to addressing overdose deaths because those are happening in everyone’s backyard. This is just one of the barriers that advocates, professionals and those in recovery face.

Stop-addiction-stigma-In a powerful statement, Assistant Division Director of King County Behavioral Health and Recovery Division, Brad Finegood said, “Public support is going to be very important…One of the biggest battles we are fighting is stigma. People who are opiate dependent are not bad people, they are people who have a sickness and illness. They have a medical condition. Rather than people being afraid, we need the community to rally around the fact that people need treatment. We have a need in our suburban cities and rather than saying we don’t want the services here, we want communities to embrace treatment and treatment that we know it works.”² Shilo Murphy of the People’s Harm Reduction Alliance says that, “If you want to stop overdose deaths…the key is getting rid of the stigma, loving and respecting people who use, supporting them to use with friends, providing them with education, and not shunning them.”¹

1.) http://www.thestranger.com/blogs/slog/2015/06/19/22411691/heroin-deaths-in-king-county-up-58-percent-since-last-year-other-opiate-deaths-declining

2.) http://www.rentonreporter.com/news/375877011.html

3.) http://www.substance.com/a-methadone-clinic-not-in-my-neighborhood/9797/

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Volunteering in Overdose Prevention

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SMART’s Director of Partner Services and Operations, and overdose prevention volunteer, Ann-Marie Reid Richardson

April 22, 2016 – Brown University School of Medicine recently hosted inter-professional training meetings to address overdose prevention methods.  This event brought together students to provide instruction and facilitate overdose response practice groups. One important overdose prevention method being taught is the administration of naloxone.

SMART’s  Director of Partner Services and Operations, Ann-Marie Reid Richardson has been volunteering with Rhode Island Medical Reserve Corps and NOPE-RI since 2009. For this gathering she provided naloxone training for attendees and participating organizations; The RI MRC / NOPE-RI, The Drug and Overdose Prevention & Rescue Coalition, in addition to Rhode Island College, University of Rhode Island, and Brown University Medical School. Multidisciplinary teams of medical students, pharmacy students, and nursing students were educated on recognizing the symptoms of overdose, how to prevent overdose, and how to revive victims of overdose until emergency medical care can be administered. When asked why she volunteers Ann-Marie said, “Participating and volunteering keeps me involved in the communities directly served by our partners. It is my way of giving back.”

The past few years have generated the largest number of fatal overdoses in our nation’s history. SMART is proud to support volunteer efforts that positively contribute to the recovery from the ongoing opiate epidemic.

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SSTAR Investigates Injectable Buprenorphine

SSTA- Investigates-Injectable-BuprenorphineIn addition to being a trusted addiction treatment services provider, Fall River-based Stanley Street Treatment and Resources Inc. ( SSTAR ) has been engaging in addiction research projects for many years, and is now helping to vet the next generation of medication-assisted treatment (MAT). SSTAR is currently investigating the safety and efficacy of injectable buprenorphine. This medication could potentially eliminate the need for daily visits to the clinic to receive doses. Patients who are eligible to participate in this pharmaceutical study will receive free buprenorphine treatment for up to 6 months and individualized weekly counseling. SSTARS Dr. Baily pointed out in a recent article that, “Access to cutting edge care through research is especially important to the uninsured and underinsured population by making access to treatment and medication easier and available at little to no cost to participants.”

Since 2002, Buprenorphine has been approved for the treatment of pain and opioid addiction in the form of tablets and film. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) the properties of buprenorphine help to:

  • Lower the potential for misuse
  • Diminish the effects of physical dependency to opioids, such as withdrawal symptoms and cravings
  • Increase safety in cases of overdose

One manufacturer, Braeburn Pharmaceuticals and Camurus recently entered into the Phase 2 of their study of CAM2038, weekly and monthly subcutaneous buprenorphine injections. Behshad Sheldon, President and CEO, Braeburn Pharmaceuticals said, “Our goal is to provide a suite of best-in-class, long-acting treatment options tailored to the individual needs of patients suffering from opioid dependence and chronic pain.”

Read more in the article by Dr. Genie Bailey of SSTAR

ETS - Evergreen Treatment Services

ETS on Addicts , Naloxone & Our Society

Molly Carney

ETS Executive Director Molly Carney

Partner Highlight

Evergreen Treatment Services ( ETS ) Executive Director Molly Carney and Research and Training Manager K. Michelle Peavy wrote an article entitled “A lifesaving drug for opioid addicts, but it’s not easy to get” that was published in the Seattle Times. It detailed their experiences in the treatment field; the importance of Naloxone (Narcan) and the pressing need for a shift in our nation’s perception of “addicts.”

Often reported in the news Naloxone (Narcan) is helping to save the lives of people who would otherwise succumb to overdose. The regulations about obtaining this life-saving medicine are hopefully expanding to other categories of people besides police and EMTs who are likely to need to administer Naloxone. Nevertheless, ETS makes the point that the focus should be on the public’s perception and treatment of people affected by addiction.

Michelle Peavy

ETS Training Manager K. Michelle Peavy

Funding of recovery support is often outweighed by public opinion that finds it’s ‘not my fault, not my problem’. Looking at the associated costs of treatment, the taxpayers may prefer to have their tax dollars spent on projects or causes that are perceived to be more deserving. However, it is important to consider the cost of not providing treatment. Whether or not one feels that the community should be responsible for helping addicted individuals, one should not outweigh the very real and steep costs associated with individuals who are not in treatment; ER visits, jail time, etc. According to the State Department of Social and Health Services, “the risk of felony conviction is 83 percent lower for those in methadone treatment for more than one year, compared to opioid addicts who are untreated.” The National Institute on Drug Addiction (NIDA) estimates that illicit drug abuse costs our nation over 193 billion dollars annually in the form of crime, lost work productivity and healthcare.

In short the authors deduced that, “We need an integrated approach, which includes expanded access to treatment, to drive down rates of overdose and address opioid addiction.”

Read the full article: http://www.seattletimes.com/opinion/a-lifesaving-drug-for-opioid-addicts-but-its-not-easy-to-get/

About ETS

evergreen logo newsEvergreen Treatment Services is a private, 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization which has been delivering evidence-based addiction treatment services in Western Washington since 1973.  Since our founding, we have earned a nationwide reputation for excellence in our work.  Our interdisciplinary team of professionals includes clinicians with advanced degrees in medicine, psychiatry, nursing, psychology, social work, and counseling.

ETS uses a comprehensive approach to treatment which combines medication assisted treatment with wrap-around services such as counseling, mental health care, and case management services.