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Q&A with Sanjay Grant, MA-LMHC and Program Director at Spectrum Health Systems

Our employees are what make us a top-notch provider of addiction treatment. They’re our boots on the ground, the problem solvers, and the go-to resources for our clients seeking help for addiction.

This week, we’re highlighting Program Director Sanjay Grant, MA-LMHC. Sanjay oversees our Pleasant Street, Worcester outpatient center which offers same-day admission to rapid access treatment, Monday, Tuesday, and Friday from 8am to 10am. We asked Sanjay to share what her day-to-day routine entails, how she grew her career with us over the last six years, and the most rewarding parts of the job.

What brought you work to Spectrum Health Systems?

Prior to my work at Spectrum, I had been working with children and was looking to make a transition in my career to work with adults. I was also highly encouraged to consider employment with the organization by a current employee.

Why did you decide to work in addiction treatment?

Quite honestly, I cannot say that I knew all along that this was the work that I wanted to do. However, after my first year at Spectrum Health Systems, I started to develop an appreciation for the resiliency that I see in my clients. I knew then that I wanted to be a part of that change process to not only assist my clients in reshaping their perceptions of themselves and their abilities to recover, but also to assist others who are not in the recovery community to generate a more informed understanding of addiction and to break free from stereotypical thinking.

What does your role entail?

In 2018, Spectrum Health Systems was awarded a grant through the Bureau of Substance Addiction Services at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, as part of the State Opioid Response (SOR) initiative. We were responsible for developing a rapid access treatment program using the “Hub and Spoke” model, which is the first-of-its-kind in the State of Massachusetts. As program director, I am responsible for the general oversight of all operations within the program. We work collaboratively in data collection and reporting on behalf of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the Bureau of Substance Abuse Services (BSAS).

What’s the most rewarding part of the job?

There are so many rewarding aspects to the work that we do. While I find it rewarding to witness growth and success within my clients, for me it is our employees in the background supporting our clients that I find to be most rewarding.

Our employees are dedicated, brave, and selfless individuals and I have been fortunate to witness their passion and commitment to the addiction community. Prior to and since COVID-19, our employees have shown their unwavering commitment to providing quality care for our clients. While we have made several changes to our operations during the pandemic, employees have remained flexible, creative, and focused on providing the best client care to our patients.

What’s the biggest lesson you have learned at your job?

I have learned that addiction is not an individual problem, it is “our” problem. The individual in recovery is to be treated as a whole, considering the many systems they belong to in their communities. As a provider, it is important for me to not only assist my clients in learning how to navigate these systems, but also find opportunities to provide advocacy and improve upon said systems.

What advice would you give to others interested in working in addiction treatment?

The work that we do can be rewarding and is no doubt a valuable necessity in our communities, but it can be demanding. I encourage anyone considering working in addiction treatment to be willing to be patient, empathetic, open-minded, while maintaining healthy boundaries and engaging in lots of self-care.

Do you have any fun hobbies or interests outside of work?

I enjoy traveling, interior decorating, reading, and various other pursuits of relaxation and self-care.

If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, call us today at 1-877-MyRehab and talk to our professionals. If you’re in the Worcester area, call ahead at 774-314-4761 for rapid access treatment. Help and hope is here!

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