NOVEMBER 2014: GATEWAY TREATMENT CENTERS PRESENT FREE ONLINE CEU TRAININGS

OPIOID OVERDOSE AVERTED: NALOXONE-FRIENDLY ZONES SAVE LIVES

naloxone, heroin, opioids, webinar, free ceu training, gateway alcohol and drug treatmentThis November, Gateway Alcohol & Drug Treatment is offering an expert-led webinar about the importance of growing Illinois’ Naloxone-friendly zones to reverse the opioid overdose epidemic. Join us during your lunchtime on November 13th or 18th to earn a continuing education credit courtesy of Gateway!

The goal of this webinar is to encourage healthcare professionals to take the most appropriate course of action in the event of an opioid overdose. Learn valuable information related to overdose and Naloxone as presented by Carl Scroggins, Gateway’s resident expert on overdose prevention.

  • 1 CEU – IAODAPCA, NAADAC, Illinois: LCSW, LSW, LCPC, LPC, Nursing,
    Psychology
  • Cost: FREE with Registration
  • Registration only available online

LEARN MORE >

CHOOSE YOUR DATE

Thursday, November 13th
12:30p.m. – 1:30p.m.
(Additional Time for Q&A)
Register

Tuesday, Novmeber 18th
12:30p.m. – 1:30p.m.
(Additional Time for Q&A)
Register

Space is limited! Register today at
RecoveryGateway.org/Training

 

CMS Announces $840 Million Initiative To Improve Patient Care and Lower Costs

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) launched a new innovative model to support clinicians in achieving large-scale health care transformation. The Transforming Clinical Practice Initiative will provide up to $840 million over the next 4 years to support 150,000 clinicians in sharing, adapting, and further developing comprehensive quality improvement strategies, which are expected to lead to greater improvements in patient health and reduction in health care costs.

This effort is especially significant to the behavioral health community. With implementation of the Affordable Care Act and the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act, more than 60 million Americans will gain access to new or expanded coverage for mental health and substance abuse services. As the health system broadens, the behavioral health field has a responsibility to lead in setting comprehensive goals to develop the workforce, improve quality, and provide effective services to individuals with behavioral health conditions.

An opportunity such as this is an incentive for the behavioral health community to integrate with and leverage funding that will transform health care delivery.

Michael-Darcy-Gateway-Alcohol-and-Drug-Treatment“I am glad to see that SAMSHA is investing in improving clinical practices. The development and improvement of clinician practices will have an immediate impact on improving quality of care.

At Gateway Alcohol & Drug Treatment Centers we track engagement, retention and continuity of care by practitioner and work with our practitioners to improve their outcomes in these areas.”

Michael Darcy
President/CEO
Gateway Alcohol & Drug Treatment

How To Apply

Beginning October 23, 2014, CMS will begin accepting applications for the following funding opportunity announcements:

Potential applicants are highly encouraged to submit nonbinding Letters of Intent to apply by November 20, 2014. The application period for both funding opportunity announcements is October 23, 2014, through January 6, 2015. The funding opportunity announcements and detailed application instructions are located on Grants.gov.

Drug Rehab Expansion Advances Fox Valley Response to Heroin Epidemic

drug rehab, fox valley, gateway alcohol & drug treatment aurora

Gateway Alcohol & Drug Treatment Aurora

Gateway Alcohol & Drug Treatment Centers announces today it has been approved by Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) to receive a $500,000 grant, which will help fund the investment surrounding a 10-bed expansion construction project at its drug rehab center located in the Aurora, IL. As heroin continues to lure a following of young adult users from the Fox Valley area, the additional capacity will help Gateway meet the escalating demand for inpatient substance abuse treatment services.

“The reality is the surge in heroin use in DuPage and Kane counties have caused a bleak “no vacancy” status quo for inpatient treatment services since providers, for the most part, have been working at full capacity. Thanks to the financial backing from DCEO, more individuals who struggle with addiction issues will have access to life-saving treatment and the kind of emotional support needed, when they are ready to get life back on track,” explains Jim Scarpace, Executive Director, Gateway Aurora.

Gateway Aurora also is an active participant in solution-minded community coalitions, which bring together elected officials, businesses leaders and concerned citizens to collaborate on strategies to address the area’s heroin problem. Thanks to unwavering support from State Representative Linda Chapa LaVia, state Sen. Jim Oberweis, Congressman Bill Foster (IL-11) and Congressman Randy Hultgren (IL-14), progress has been made in alleviating vulnerabilities, educating the public and saving lives. For example, Naperville police now carry Narcan nasal spray to be administered in the event of an overdose, which has resulted in 25 lives saved in one year alone according to Chicago Tribune story published on Oct. 17, 2014.

“During my time in Congress, I have looked for ways to attack from head-on the problem of substance abuse. Healthcare providers know the best way to fight addiction is to provide in-patient treatment, like the services provided by Gateway Alcohol and Drug Treatment Centers. This grant funding will go a long way in the fight against substance abuse in the Fox Valley and the surrounding area. Ten more beds at this facility mean more people will get the help they need and be on the road to recovery,” says Congressman Bill Foster.

When complete in July 2015, Gateway Aurora’s renovated inpatient annex will include a total of 44 beds, increasing client capacity by about 22 percent. The Aurora center also offers step-down services, Outpatient and Aftercare programs; please visit RecoverGateway.org/Aurora for more information.

Health Problems: Is Alcohol at the Heart of the Matter?

Alcohol health problems, gateway treatment centersAccording to the U.S. National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, about 28 percent of American adults drink at levels that put them at risk for alcohol dependence and alcohol-related health problems. Yet the risks associated with heavy drinking, such as high blood pressure and congestive heart failure, are seemingly overlooked.

The scary thing is people may never feel the symptoms of menacing health issues related to alcohol use. That’s why an annual physical should never be considered complete without  a screening for substance abuse issues. And, when required, doctors need to initiate brief interventions to motivate positive change. Screening and brief intervention may be provided in an office, emergency department or inpatient visit for both new and established patients, and is a reimbursable service.

Medical professionals are in a unique position to play a key role in increasing awareness of risks associated with alcohol abuse, including:

  • Long-term alcohol consumption can lead to changes in the way the brain looks and cognitive functioning.
  • Alcohol abuse is a frequent contributor to elevated blood pressure.
    • Heavy consumption may weaken the immune system. Excessive alcohol consumption can lead not only to liver damage, but also to increased illness and death from infectious diseases, including pneumonia, tuberculosis, HIV, hepatitis B, hepatitis C and septicemia.
    • Alcohol consumption is associated with a range of mental health problems, including:
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Insomnia
  • Personality disorders
  • Risk-taking behaviors
  • Schizophrenia
  • Suicidal thoughts and actions

Learn More About the Effects of Alcohol Abuse>

Moderate Drinking Defined

To remain within the low-risk range, medical professionals should advise adherence to accepted moderate drinking guidelines.

For women, moderate drinking is defined by USDA as up to 1 drink per day; low-risk limits set by National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) recommend no more than 3 drinks per day and no moderate drinking, gateway alcohol and drug treatment centersmore than 7 drinks per week.

For men, moderate drinking is defined by USDA as up to 2 drinks per day; low-risk limits set by NIAAA recommend no more than 4 drinks per day and no more than 14 drinks per week.

For adult and adolescents who need help with alcohol and/or drug abuse issues, Gateway offers convenience as an in-network treatment provider with centers throughout Illinois and the St. Louis Metro East area. With substance abuse treatment programs offered before and after traditional work hours, getting help doesn’t require falling behind at work or school. To schedule a free and confidential consultation, please call Gateway at 877-505-HOPE (4673).

 

 

Red Ribbon Week Reminder: Teen Marijuana Use Opens Door to Addiction

Marijuana is the most common illicit drug used in the United States. Prior to 2007, marijuana use was on the decline however, since then, use of marijuana has increased. It was actually the most frequently identified drug seized in the St. Louis metro area in early to mid 2013.

marijuana use, gateway treatment centersThe growing belief that marijuana is a safe drug may be the result of public discussions about medical marijuana and the public debate over the drug’s legal status. Some naively assume marijuana cannot be harmful because it is “natural” but not all natural plants are good for you—take tobacco, for example.

Likewise, young people are less likely to disapprove of regular marijuana use, which indicates warnings regarding the risks associated with teen marijuana use have fallen on teens’ deaf ears. In fact, in the past 10 years the number of high schoolers who think regular marijuana use is risky has dropped dramatically according to 2013 Monitoring the Future (MTF) survey. The change in attitudes is reflected by increasing rates of marijuana use among high schoolers. From 2008 to 2013, past-month use of marijuana increased:

  • From 13.8% to 18.0% among 10th graders.
  • From 19.4% to 22.7% among 12th graders.

The naked truth is teens using marijuana expose themselves to changes in brain chemistry, which can result in learning, memory problems and IQ loss. Another valid concern is that, contrary to common belief, marijuana can be addictive. In fact, marijuana addiction results in the withdrawal and craving symptoms that are at the root of addictive disorders. With the legalization of medical marijuana in Illinois this only supports the notion to teens throughout the St. Louis metro east area that smoking pot is not really bad for you.

About 1 in 10 people who try marijuana will become addicted to it. But here’s the kicker: The addiction rate jumps to about 1 in 6 among people who start using marijuana as teenagers, and up to 1 in 2 among daily users!

Oftentimes, even before parents, teens are the first to realize when friends use drugs. In honor of Red Ribbon Week from Oct. 23-30, 2014, I can offer tips for drama-free teen-to-teen interventions:

  • Simply telling a friend you’re concerned about drug and/or alcohol use can be a big help. Let your friend you’re worried their slipping grades and behavioral changes are related to drug abuse
  • Don’t be hurt if your concerns are dismissed as the effects of drug use may prevent your friend from “hearing” you or acting on your concerns.
  • Understand that it is never easy for anyone to admit that they have a drug problem.
  • Assure your friend that he/she is not alone no matter what. People with drug problems may hang out with the wrong crowd—and they don’t want to turn away from these so-called friends for fear of being alone.
  • Listen, encourage, share and support.
  • Read more tips for talking to teens about substance abuse > 
Gateway Treatment Centers Swansea

Article By: Mike Feaman, Program Director, Gateway Swansea

If a friend has been using drugs or alcohol for an extended period of time, it’s important to understand that addiction is a brain disease. Just like you wouldn’t expect someone with cancer to be able to recover without the help of a doctor, the right treatment and support from family and friends—you can’t expect your friends to heal themselves. If the problem appears to be too big for you to handle alone, turn to a school counselor or a responsible adult to get your friend help. I urge you to take this opportunity during Red Ribbon Week to talk to your friends and family about how to prevent substance abuse or get treatment if someone may need help.

 For more resources regarding marijuana use and its effect on brain chemistry, please visit RecoverGateway.org/Marijuana.

 

Marijuana: 1 out of 5 Teens Get into Cars with Stoned Drivers

marijuana-driving, gateway treatment centersA recent study found more high school seniors and college students that drove impaired or with an impaired driver were under the influence of marijuana, not alcohol. But it’s not just dents to your car or points on your license—for some people, drugged driving is how they die.

When you consider that 1 in 3 fatally injury drivers tested positive for drugs in 2009, this means teens who drive stoned put the safety of passengers and other drivers on the road at great risk—just like a driving drunk. The study also found that drugged drivers are more likely to have car accidents and traffic tickets or warnings.

Among high school seniors:

  • 9% drove after drinking alcohol and 12% drove after using marijuana.
  • 15% rode with a driver who had been drinking alcohol and 20% rode with a driver who used marijuana.

For information on the effects of marijuana or marijuana abuse, visit RecoverGateway.org/Marijuana.

A Doctor’s Note: How Self-Medicating Spirals into Addiction

By Dr. John Larson Corporate Medical Director Gateway Treatment Centers

By Dr. John Larson
Corporate Medical Director
Gateway Treatment Centers

Many individuals stumble into addiction unwittingly by trying to self-medicating, or using a substance to manage the symptoms of an underlying medical or psychiatric problem such as pain, anxiety, or depression.  The substance may be alcohol, an illicit drug, or a prescription medication.  In the beginning there may be short-term relief but as tolerance develops the medication or drug becomes less and less effective.

A common example is social anxiety, or fear of being in large groups, especially when there are lots of strangers.  Alcohol is commonly available and in modest doses it may initially reduce the anxiety providing a sense of relief and even a pleasurable sensation because of the effect it has on brain chemistry.  However, the body metabolizes the alcohol very quickly and it soon loses its effect.  With continued use the chemistry of the brain gradually changes and the feeling of anxiety or nervousness gets worse when alcohol is not present, even when the individual is not in a stressful social situation.  The amount and frequency of use increases and physical dependence develops.  When an individual tries to cut back, the rebound of the original symptoms only intensifies the discomfort experienced during withdrawal, making it very difficult to stop using. A person becomes more and more preoccupied with obtaining and using alcohol or their drug of choice.  This also often occurs with drugs such as Valium and Xanax, sleeping medications, and drugs used to treat acute and chronic pain.

This is often called “self medication.”  Unfortunately many people and even health care professionals are under the mistaken impression that the addiction issues will disappear if the underlying problem is treated: “If I can find some other way of treating my social anxiety my alcohol problem will simply go away.”  This is seldom the case.  When it reaches this point the drug or alcohol use has a life of its own and the individual needs to be specifically evaluated and professionally treated for addiction as well as for the underlying psychiatric or medical problem.  Failure to treat both inevitably results in continued suffering and worsening health complications.

The good news is that through integrated substance abuse treatment, a person can begin to understand how their underlying mental health concerns and substance abuse issues are related, to get them the help they need. To learn more about treatment options for substance abuse issues, or our free, confidential consultation, call Gateway today at 877-505-HOPE (4673).

 

 

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