Spectrum Health Systems

2020 Recap: Expanding Addiction Treatment in New England

Published On: November 4th, 2020Categories: Spectrum Corrections, Treatment & Recovery

As another year draws to a close, we can’t help but reflect on just how different 2020 has been. It has created many challenges for addiction treatment providers, and we’re proud of the way our centers and employees were able to meet them.

Before we enter 2021, we want to acknowledge Spectrum’s accomplishments over the previous year!

Expanded Access to Addiction Treatment

Announcements & Designations

We were extremely proud to kick off the year by announcing that our New England Recovery Center (NERC) was designated by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts (BCBSMA) as a Blue Distinction® Center for Substance Use Treatment and Recovery. This accolade was given in recognition of the quality of treatment and individualized care that NERC has provided to its clients since 2015.

We also announced that we will be accepting Medicare Part B insurance at our opiate treatment programs, in addition to the wide variety of health insurance options we already accept. Similarly we announced that our Haverhill and Saugus outpatient centers, which closely border New Hampshire, will now be accepting clients with New Hampshire Medicaid. We aspire to provide integrated addiction treatment to as many people as possible, and these moves were a huge step in advancing that goal.

We further expanded our offerings within Massachusetts correctional facilities by announcing a new contract with the Norfolk Sherriff’s Office (NSO) to provide medication-assisted treatment (MAT) to offenders. Thanks to this contract NSO is able to offer methadone to participating inmates for the first time. Correctional facilities in surrounding cities and states have even transferred inmates to Norfolk to take advantage of the program.

Finally, we opened a brand new outpatient treatment facility in Great Barrington. The facility offers MAT and mental health services to clients, which has been much needed in the area. This is Spectrum’s fifteenth outpatient center, keeping us well on our way to meeting our goal of treating 500,000 new clients by 2025.

COVID-19 Response

It’s impossible to reflect on this year without considering how we’ve had to respond to COVID-19, which we did swiftly by instituting new policies and programs and expanding others that were already in place.

We increased our telehealth offerings to all of our sites for the use of psychiatric and behavioral healthcare. Clients are able to meet with clinicians and counselors through video chat and telephone calls, allowing essential treatment to continue uninterrupted. We increased the number of laptops and webcams available to staff to accommodate this change. We also reduced restrictions for take-home medications for outpatient clients and implemented a curbside delivery system to make access as safe as possible for everybody.

We were also successful in procuring personal protection equipment for our staff. Employee safety has been a top concern during the pandemic, especially for those on the COVID-19 unit, which we established to provide addiction treatment to clients who also tested positive for the virus in an isolated environment.

Education & Community

This year was packed with state and national presentations by our clinical experts. We led trainings on opioid use disorder and its links to trauma and mental illness; medication-assisted treatment; the benefits of telehealth; and how to improve clinical care and expand access to treatment. Many of these presentations were held virtually in the latter half of the year, proving our team’s flexibility and commitment to this work.

We’re passionate about how we can improve the lives of the people in our communities. Knowing that our police and firefighters are just as committed to this work as we are, we announced a donation of $150,000 to our community’s first responders in Westborough and Weymouth. By supporting each other’s efforts, we continue to have a huge impact on our communities.

2020 has truly been a momentous year for Spectrum. As always, thank you to our incredible staff for making this year’s achievements possible!

If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, call us today at 1-877-MyRehab and we’ll help you on the path to recovery.

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