Mark Your Calendar! Show Your Support at Chicago Parity Hearing on August 6

Parity champions Patrick Kennedy and Jim Ramstad have organized field hearings across the country and will be in Illinois on August 6, 2012, from 5-7 p.m. at the Union League Club of Chicago, 65 West Jackson Boulevard, Chicago, IL 60604.

At the hearings, consumers, providers, representatives from the business and insurer communities and state and local representatives will testify on parity implementation and enforcement.

Modeled after the field hearings in 2007, which were successful in helping to enact the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act (MHPAEA) into law, the 2012 field hearings are intended to shine a light on problems patients are still facing as they try to access mental health and substance abuse treatment and areas where parity is increasing access to care.

Join Gateway Foundation CEO and President Michael Darcy who will be presenting at this important event. As a sponsor, Gateway Foundation encourages you to mark your calendar so you can show your support for parity.

For more information visit ParityIsPersonal.org.

Gateway Foundation Announces Newly Elected Board of Directors

Gateway Foundation today announced the board of director election of its officers and directors.

For more than 40 years, Gateway Foundation has helped thousands of individuals successfully complete substance abuse treatment each year. As the largest provider of alcohol and drug abuse treatment in Illinois, Gateway Foundation provides care to those with health insurance, but also to many who can’t afford treatment. Gateway Foundation has 10 treatment centers located throughout Illinois, and also provides treatment services in Missouri, New Jersey and Texas.

“We feel quite fortunate at Gateway Foundation for having the very best community and business leaders looking out for our interests as well as those individuals who need substance abuse treatment. The board of directors is focused on ensuring Gateway Foundation provides effective and quality treatment to the people in the communities where we are located,” says Gateway Foundation President and CEO Michael Darcy.

Gateway Foundation Board of Directors Officers:

Chairman: Henry Wolfe, Chairman of De La Vega Occidental & Oriental Holdings, LLC

Treasurer: Sidney Bradley, Vice President Financial Reporting Operations Strategy and Execution at Citbank

Secretary: Elizabeth Ogilvie Simer, Senior Vice President and Manager of Strategic Sales Support at Mesirow Financial

Staff: Michael Darcy, President and CEO of Gateway Foundation

Board of Directors Members:

Donald Crossett, retired, 38 years in general management and financial positions of entrepreneurial service businesses

Victor Fonseca, retired, Vice President of Compensation and Benefits of Exelon

Warren Harrington, Managing Consultant IT Strategy Practice at Forsythe Solutions

Glenn B. Huebner, Board Certified Trial Litigation Attorney at Donato, Minx and Brown

Jennifer Jerit Johnson, Partner at Tressler LLP

John R. Kromer, retired, Vice President of Human Resources, Factory Card & Party Outlet

Patricia (Pat) LePenske, President at LPR Services Inc.

Richard (Dick) McCullough, Executive Vice President of Space-Time Media

Gary Rada, President of Rada Concepts LLC

Amalesh Sank, President of Sagertech Communications

Len Shankman, Director of Specialty Finance at Caremark

Andrew Smith, Managing Partner of Impact Advisors, LLC

Warren Stippich, Jr., Partner & Practice Leader of Business Advisory Services at Grant Thornton, LLP

For more information about Gateway Foundation treatment centers in Illinois, visit RecoverGateway.org.

How Exercise Aids Your Commitment to Recovery

A great tool anyone can use to manage emotions in a healthy manner is getting into an exercise routine. Exercise has been shown to alleviate both depression and anxiety, which are often precursors to a drug or alcohol relapse.

Doing as little as 30 minutes or more of exercise a day for at least three times a week has clinically proven to significantly improve many of the symptoms that are associated with anxiety and depression. Additionally, doing more rigorous exercises, such as bicycling or jogging, for as little as 10 or 15 minutes at a time, can be almost as effective. When an individual chooses these more rigorous activities, it may take less time exercising to improve their mood. It is extremely important to remember that exercise will benefit a person who has struggled with substance abuse the most if they stick to it, long term.

Physical activity decreases anxiety and depression in a number of different ways, which may include:

  • By releasing feel-good brain chemicals (endorphins) that have been reported to ease depression and be effective in altering an individual’s mood.
  • Exercise has been reported to increase body temperature, which can have a calming effect on the body.
  • Exercise can assist individuals in recovery by increasing their confidence level. Meeting various exercise goals or challenges, even small ones, can boost an individual’s confidence.
  • Exercise will often offer opportunities to meet and socialize with others; just exchanging pleasantries or a friendly smile as you walk in your neighborhood can often help your mood.
  • Exercise is a distraction that can get you away from boredom and negative thoughts that tend to feed anxiety and depression.

When a person that has struggled with addiction acknowledges that a positive correlation exists between exercise and relapse prevention, they will be more likely to start and stick to a regular exercise routine.

Gateway Foundation Offers Live Help Chat Feature on RecoverGateway.org

In an effort to make it easier for people seeking care for substance abuse to get answers, Gateway Foundation Alcohol & Drug Treatment now offers a helpful chat feature on RecoverGateway.org to extend immediate support to individuals in distress. Instant and anonymous, Live Help is another avenue for individuals to ask questions about drug and alcohol abuse treatment and schedule a free and confidential consultation with a substance abuse expert.

“We understand the pain families experience when a loved one is struggling with alcohol or drug abuse,” explains Michael Darcy, president, Gateway Foundation Alcohol & Drug Treatment. “With this in mind, Gateway strives to make it as hassle-free as possible for individuals to get answers from knowledgeable substance abuse experts. With live chat and a 24-hour help line, individuals may reach Gateway Foundation on the terms most comfortable to them.”

The live chat feature is available on RecoverGateway.org seven days a week at the following hours: Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Saturday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Visitors to the website can select a live chat icon found on the homepage to pose questions about drug and alcohol abuse treatment programs for adolescents and adults, insurance coverage, treatment centers or schedule a free and confidential consultation with a counselor. After hours, people may call 877-505-HOPE (4673) for assistance.

Working Under the Influence: An Accident Waiting to Happen

Did you know nearly 1 in 10 American adults and teenagers have a drug and/or alcohol dependence problem? That one person could be your neighbor, cousin, teenager’s best friend or even your co-worker. The truth is, odds favor that someone each of us knows currently is struggling with alcoholism or drug abuse.

Gateway Foundation Alcohol & Drug Treatment reminds employers that the workplace is not immune to drug abuse. First of all, most substance abusers are employed. In a survey of callers to the national cocaine hotline, 18 percent of callers confessed to stealing from co-workers to support their addiction, and 64 percent admitted that their drug use negatively affected their job performance.

And it’s not just illicit drugs that contribute to workplace hazards, so does prescription drugs like sleeping pills, sedatives and pain killers.

Realize that working under the influence affects reflexes and reaction time, concentration, perceptions and judgment—all of which make a person working under the influence an accident waiting to happen. In fact, people who work under the influence and cause accidents are often the ones who are injured, and the accidents they cause can also injure other people.

Here are some important facts to know about specific drugs:

  • Marijuana is the most common illegal drug used on the job.
  • Experts warn that addiction can happen very quickly. In the case of heroin, a person could become addicted after just one use.
  • Although alcohol is a legal substance, it is still a drug, and it can be highly addictive.
  • Inhalants such as airplane glue, paint thinner, aerosols, nitrous oxide, amyl nitrate and butyl nitrate contain very hazardous chemicals that can be deadly.

To prevent situations that jeopardize safety in your workplace, learn to recognize these 10 signs of possible substance abuse:

  1. Frequent work absences and late arrivals
  1. Poor concentration and coordination; slow mental and physical reflexes
  2. Restlessness, nervousness, paranoia
  3. Argumentative, defensive, and/or blaming others for problems
  4. Letting responsibilities slide; loss of interest in work
  5. Impaired judgment and decision making
  6. Mood swings; even bizarre or violent behavior
  7. Revved-up movements and speech
  8. Forgetfulness and carelessness
  9. Pushing beyond physical capacity

If you would like to help enhance safety at your workplace, educating workers about substance abuse is a wise step. With an eager team of outreach professionals available to assist you with your needs, Gateway Foundation Alcohol & Drug Treatment can help make a difference at your place of work. A member of the outreach team at Gateway Foundation will work with your human resources or employee assistance program manager to identify and provide the most effective tools based on your specific substance abuse education needs. Contact Gateway today at Outreach@GatewayFoundation.org.

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