by Nick Randell and Chuck Colston, Program Officers
Gosnold, a substance abuse prevention and treatment provider on Cape Cod, was recently honored for their opiate prevention and treatment work. Tufts Health Plan awarded their Quality Innovation Award to Gosnold's Young Adult Opiate Program at a ceremony on June 4th. The program delivers highly-personalized supports that include counseling, lifestyle and job coaching, medication assisted treatment, and technology assisted interventions. Program outcomes are encouraging. Participants achieve longer periods of remission and do better maintaining employment.
"Receiving this award from Tufts Health Plan is an honor and a testament to the hard work, expertise and persistence of our treatment and recovery staff," said Raymond V. Tamasi, Gosnold President and CEO. "Even greater than this award, is the reward of seeing so many young people who are successfully managing and sustaining their recovery from opiate addiction."
The recovery coaching component is the "heart and soul" of the Young Adult Opiate Program. Coaches are readily available to support patients and families. The first six or seven months are pretty intense with constant communication in an effort to help patients engage in healthy lifestyles. Gosnold was one of the first providers in the country to use ACHESS (Addiction Comprehensive Health Enhancement Support System). ACHESS is a smartphone application developed by the University of Wisconsin to help patients maintain recovery from drug or alcohol addiction.
Gosnold reports that admissions to detox and rehab programs have decreased by nearly 65% and 83%, respectively. On average, patients achieved 254 days of sobriety compared to an average of 64 days in the year prior.
Current Tower grants support Gosnold's counseling work in Cape Cod area school districts.They have a presence in five high schools and middle schools and hope to grow that number. Work includes direct addiction counseling, staff training, and outreach to parents.
Opiate addiction is a public health crisis, plain and simple. In many states,
opiate overdose deaths now surpass traffic fatalities. Grim statistics show the
crisis striking hard in our grantmaking regions in Western New York and Eastern
Massachusetts. In 2014, Essex County (Massachusetts) had 146 fatalities; Erie
County (New York) had 116. Incredibly, 13 people died of opiate overdoses in
Erie County in one week this March. In the first three months of 2015,
the Cape Cod region recorded 12 fatalities.
Photo by Contributor submission to Barnstable Patriot Staff. Barnstable Patriot "Business Briefs - 2015 - June 19." Photograph. 19 June 2015. Web. 24 June 2015.