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.

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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Employee Spotlight: Meet Our Inpatient Nursing Supervisor, Kelly Field

Our nursing staff is at the heart of treatment here at Spectrum, always going above and beyond to care for clients, run programs, and respond to emergencies. In celebration of National Nurses Month, we’re highlighting Kelly Field, the Inpatient Nursing Supervisor at our Westborough, Massachusetts campus, to get a closer look at the amazing work that she and all of our nurses do year-round.

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Slipping into Alcoholism: The Importance of Monitoring Your Intake During COVID-19

We’ve been talking a lot about the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic: the frustration of not being able to go out, the difficulty in trying to get certain items, and the simple boredom of being trapped inside day after day. But what we haven’t talked about is the fear and anxiety of everyday life and how we’re all coping with the stress and enormous change in our daily routines. Many people are turning to alcohol to help cope with the uncertainty of the pandemic. Whether or not you’re in recovery, this is a dangerous road to go down, and drinking to excess does nothing to address the underlying issues at play.

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How Spectrum’s Peer Recovery Centers Have Adapted to COVID-19

One of the most important tools for addiction recovery are support group sessions, where people can come together to work through their problems with others in similar situations. Many individuals in recovery rely on peer recovery centers for ongoing support and help in maintaining their recovery. Even after being forced to temporarily close their physical doors due to COVID-19, Everyday Miracles in downtown Worcester is doing everything possible to support clients and keep its community together.

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We’re Here for You: How Spectrum Health Systems Is Continuing Treatment Amid COVID-19

When the novel coronavirus hit the nation, our everyday lives were turned upside down – and for good reason. All of us hold a responsibility to flatten the curve and slow the spread of COVID-19 by staying home and only leaving the house for essential reasons.

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Employee Spotlight: Meet Our Family Engagement Specialist, Ronald Burgess

We have so many talented and dedicated employees at Spectrum Health Systems, and we want to make sure that we take the time to express our gratitude and highlight all of the amazing work they do for our clients. Today, we share a conversation with our Family Engagement Specialist Ronald Burgess.

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What Happens After Addiction Treatment? Your Guide to Post-Treatment Life

Oftentimes on our blog, we talk about life before recovery from drug or alcohol addiction, what to expect when entering treatment, how to find the right facility, etc. But post-treatment life is equally as important and can be just as confusing to navigate. It’s easy to stay on track and in a routine inside the walls of a treatment center, but once discharged, it’s all up to you to stay on the road to long-term recovery.

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How Westborough Firefighters Are Mitigating the Addiction Crisis Through Education

They see them every day in homes and in neighborhoods – overdoses. Day after day, they respond to calls and provide critical emergency services to people suffering overdoses or associated illness, transporting patients to hospitals and even providing help for people who ask for it. The Westborough Fire Department is tackling the problem head on by addressing opioid addiction and overdoses before they occur.

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The Challenges of Living with a Parent with a Substance Use Disorder

How it Affects Children and What Can Be Done to Help.

Anyone who has a family member suffering from addiction knows how painful it is to watch someone you love struggle with an all-consuming life-threatening disease. Challenges that come with living with someone that has a drug or alcohol addiction include mood swings and unreliability. For children whose parents suffer from addiction, these are more than just challenges. Often times, it comes down to a child being able to stay in their home or needing to live elsewhere.

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Underneath the Opioid Crisis in America: From Each State’s Perspective

The opioid crisis in America is in the news every day and its deadly and pervasive effect on our society is well known. Interestingly, not all geographic areas are experiencing this crisis to the same degree. Region by region, the numbers vary drastically. For example, according to the National Institute of Drug Abuse, opioid overdoses increased by 30% in 45 states, between 2016 and 2017. In big cities specifically, particularly in the Midwest, overdoses were up by as much as 54 to 70 percent.

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1236 Hits

Goodbye 2019: A Look Back at All of Our Progress

Another year has come to a close and a new door is about to open. Whether you’re currently in treatment, recovery or active addiction, the new year is a fresh start for all of us.

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Expanding Access to Addiction Treatment is an Important Step to Combat Public Health Crisis

Addiction is a complex disease with no single solution. It’s not just the disease itself that can wreak havoc on a person’s life, there are many facets of the issue that make the road to recovery seem difficult. Arguably at the top of that list is access to reputable and accessible treatment options, which is why we recently launched two new innovative programs to help people across Massachusetts struggling from drug and alcohol addiction find and receive care quickly.

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Recap: Our Panel with Regis College on Careers in Addiction Treatment

The last five decades have been a roller coaster for addiction treatment – from the war on drugs to the introduction of medication-assisted treatment. On November 21, we co-hosted a panel discussion with Regis College about addiction treatment, behavioral health and career options in the field for 45 soon-to-be graduates as well as additional viewers tuning in through a live stream.

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Refining Addiction: Notable Changes and Future Implications

Language nuances change over time as society gains greater awareness and sensitivity regarding the struggles experienced by various groups of people. In the addiction treatment community, we’re well aware of the stigma often associated with the disease and its related vocabulary. The concepts of alcohol and drug dependency weren’t considered an illness until 1956. In fact, addiction wasn’t officially classified as a disease until 1987. The definition of addiction was revised in 2011 and the American Society of Addiction Medicine recently produced an updated definition yet again.

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Understanding Naloxone: Here’s How You Can Make A Difference for People Struggling with Addiction

Did you know that October 26 is National Make A Difference Day? Coming together to make a difference strengthens communities, overcomes adversity and builds resilience. To honor the event, we’re encouraging all to carry naloxone (otherwise known by brand names NARCAN® and EVZIO®) to save the lives of people dying from an opioid overdose.

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Spectrum Health Systems to Host Free Family Education Program on November 23rd – Sign Up Today!

At Spectrum Health Systems, we know from experience that when someone is struggling with substance use disorder, he or she does not suffer alone – the family suffers as well. As part of our client-centered, holistic approach to addiction treatment, we believe in the importance of family-focused programming.

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National Recovery Month: Casey Carrozza’s Recovery Journey

Every September, we observe National Recovery Month. Hosted by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), Recovery Month aims to increase awareness and understanding of mental health and substance use disorders, while promoting professional services that help people in need.

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How Has Addiction and Treatment Changed in the Last 50 Years?

Spectrum Health Systems was founded 50 years ago, and in that time, we’ve seen extensive strides taken in drug and alcohol addiction treatment. Much has changed, and much has stayed the same – some treatments still in use today were introduced as early as the 1960s. Before we jump into changes in treatment over time, let’s start by discussing the issue itself – addiction.

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It’s Tee Time for Spectrum Health System’s 18th Annual Golf Tournament

We’re eagerly preparing for Spectrum’s 18th Annual Charity Golf Tournament – our largest fundraiser of the year! On Monday, September 30th, Spectrum will take over the links at the Worcester Country Club in Worcester, MA to raise money in support of our mission to improve the lives of individuals impacted by addiction.

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