Blog: News & Views from the Field

Knowledge can be empowering. Whether you are seeking recovery for yourself or someone else, we hope you find our blog topics helpful. Check back often or subscribe today.

Addiction and Long-term Care in the Construction Industry

Opioid use is uncommonly high in the construction industry, where workers face many physical hazards and are at an increased risk of getting injured. One study shows that construction workers are the most likely occupation to misuse opioids and cocaine. Compared to other industries in North America, construction workers are roughly six times more likely to become addicted to opioids.

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194 Hits

Learn More About Our Same-Day Medication Program

If you or a loved one needs addiction treatment today, Spectrum is ready. Our Rapid Access Treatment Program, located at 475 Pleasant Street in Worcester, Mass. is a specialized program which allows people to come in for an assessment and receive their first dose of medication for opioid use disorders (MOUD) on the same day. As the only organization in Massachusetts offering rapid access treatment using buprenorphine and naltrexone, this program is uniquely positioned to help incoming clients throughout the state start their recovery journey immediately.

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278 Hits

Exemplary Addiction Treatment During a Pandemic | 2021 CARF Accreditation

Spectrum Health Systems strives to provide current, comprehensive, evidence-based addiction treatment for our clients. We rely both on our own experts to achieve this high quality of care and on third parties that conduct objective reviews according to internationally recognized standards. Following a recent onsite survey, we were thrilled to receive special recognition from one of the most well-regarded accrediting authorities, CARF International, for our specialized COVID-19 Unit.

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368 Hits

Meet our New MADOC Medical Director: Q&A with Sharif Nankoe

Dr. Sharif Nankoe has been appointed as Medical Director for Spectrum Health Systems’ new statewide correctional program with the Massachusetts Department of Corrections (MADOC), serving inmates with opioid use disorders (OUD). Get to know Dr. Nankoe and his views on correctional addiction treatment!

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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.

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486 Hits

Why We Administered COVID-19 Vaccines to Local Partner Organizations in Need

It’s been a long and difficult road - COVID-19 hit Massachusetts in February 2020. By mid-March, businesses were shutting down and people were hunkering down at home. At Spectrum Health Systems and the New England Recovery Center, we sprang into action and created a specialized COVID-19 unit designed to treat people suffering from drug and alcohol use disorders as well as COVID-19. Through the ups and downs in the Commonwealth, Spectrum and NERC have held steadfast in our mission to help those suffering from substance use disorders even during a global pandemic.

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The Importance of Language in Reducing the Stigma Often Associated with Substance Use Disorders

Words matter, especially when we as a society continue to fight the stigma against those struggling with addiction. As we learn more every day about drug and alcohol addiction disorders, we also have to contend with the fact that helpful and educational terms change over time. Sometimes it can be hard to keep up with, but it’s important for allies to those in recovery to stay up-to-date on the do’s and don’ts of addiction-related language. Let’s break down which words are helpful and others that may hurt people.

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807 Hits

Regis College Panel: Addiction Treatment – Pandemic Emergency Response and Beyond

The impact of COVID-19 has been particularly felt by people who struggle with addiction. For those of us who work in the field of addiction treatment, most of this year has been devoted to responding to the pandemic and strengthening our organizations so that we are prepared for future emergencies.

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Spectrum’s Guardian Angel: Shana Adams and Masks Made with Love

At Spectrum Health Systems, we’re lucky to have an external network of dedicated individuals who donate their time and effort to help us with our mission. One of those incredible individuals is Shana Adams, founder of Masks Made With Love/MetroWest MA.

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1074 Hits

2020 Recap: Expanding Addiction Treatment in New England

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.

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956 Hits

Three Things Dax Shepard is Teaching the World About Relapse

Recently, actor Dax Shepard shared a big secret with the world: he had relapsed after sixteen years of sobriety. On his podcast, Armchair Expert, he explained that he had been keeping an “enormous secret,” that he had been prescribed painkillers after a motorcycle accident and ultimately started misusing them. What started out as a prescription for OxyContin turned into a relapse.

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1233 Hits

Spectrum’s COVID-19 Unit Reopens to Meet Second Wave

At the outset of this pandemic, we established a dedicated COVID-19 unit to treat people who had tested positive for the virus, but also needed medical detoxification and clinical stabilization from addiction. Over the summer, the unit enjoyed a brief respite as the number of clients with COVID-19 dwindled down. Now, cases are on the rise again in Massachusetts and our specialized unit is back in action at full capacity to respond to both addiction and the pandemic.

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964 Hits

Finding Community & Support Through Virtual Recovery

National Recovery Month is a time to raise awareness about addiction and celebrate lives in recovery while gathering strength from the community. September 2020 was the culmination of more than half a year living in a global pandemic, a period that was for many the most difficult stage of their recovery thus far. As evidenced by September’s wide array of virtual celebrations and remembrances, recovery communities have been able to rise to the challenge and continue to support each other in these uncertain times.

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A Look Back: Supporting Communities and Professionals with Training and Education

At Spectrum Heath Systems, we are committed to sharing our knowledge of substance use disorders and addiction treatment with our surrounding communities through our robust training and education program. Lisa Blanchard, Vice President of Clinical Services, has been leading the charge in providing these training sessions even during the pandemic, and is often joined by other members of our team such as VP of Business Development, David Nefussy, and Director of Outpatient Services, Tracy Desruisseaux. This year has presented unique challenges to every aspect of addiction treatment but our incredible team rose to the challenge with a calendar that was packed full of presentations, trainings and virtual conferences, working with partners to keep our commitment to community and education front and center!

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National Recovery Month: Celebrating Strength and Community

Every September, we observe National Recovery Month, created by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) to raise awareness and educate people about substance use disorders and the many treatment options available to them. It is also a time to celebrate the advances made in addiction treatment, and the lives of people who struggle with substance use and mental health disorders. There is hope for recovery and for living happy, healthy and independent lives.

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Get to Know Spectrum Health Systems’ Internship Program

Since Spectrum Health Systems’ internship program was founded nearly a decade ago, it has continued to grow and expand its relationships with local Massachusetts colleges and universities while giving students incredibly valuable hands-on experience to prepare for careers in the clinical field. We talked with the director of the program to give you an inside look.

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1233 Hits

An Inside Look at Spectrum Health Systems’ Young Adult Program

Young adulthood is supposed to be a time for fun, finding yourself, and a (relatively) carefree lifestyle. However, one-third of young adults in the U.S. are struggling with addiction and mental illness. In fact, one-in-ten young adults between the age of 18 and 25 have an alcohol-use disorder (AUD) and one-in-seven have a substance use disorder (SUD).

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1576 Hits

Client Spotlight: Lou Falcon – Spectrum’s Short-Term Transitional Housing Support Program

Detox, rehabilitation, and other inpatient treatment programs offer strong support and guidance at a time when people need it most. What many people don’t realize is that being ready to leave rehab doesn’t necessarily mean that they are ready to fully reintegrate into society immediately afterward. Leaving the structure and support of an addiction treatment center can be jarring. Not everyone has a strong support system to help them stay on track, and it can be difficult to find a new job and establish a routine alone. The stress of trying to resume a normal life, on top of staying sober, can easily lead to relapse without aftercare support.

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1036 Hits

Meet Our New Board Chair: Q&A with Andrew Salmon

Earlier this year we announced Andrew Salmon's appointment to Board Chair. We recently sat down with Andrew to get to know him better and learn about his perspectives on Spectrum as well as his vision for the future.

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Q&A with Stacy Desnoyers, Program Director of Spectrum Health Systems’ Medication-Assisted Treatment Reentry Initiative

Throughout all of our programs, Spectrum Health Systems has a strong and tightknit workforce. This is especially true for our Recovery Support Navigators, who work directly with inmates as they break through the walls of drug and alcohol addiction and reclaim their lives. Program Director, Stacy Desnoyers, opens up about her career path, its challenges and rewards, and her fantastic team.

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1414 Hits

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