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.

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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Spectrum Health Systems Makes Long-Term Investment in Employees’ Professional Development

At Spectrum Health Systems, we attribute our success to our incredible staff. In order to attract and retain talented individuals who share our mission of providing the highest quality of addiction treatment, we offer a robust Educational Assistance program which supports all employees in their professional development. This year alone, we’ve provided more than $200,000 to support our staff in continuing their education. Clients ultimately benefit from having highly trained staff committed to enhancing their skills and knowledge.

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Spectrum’s Edition of Extreme Makeover

Recently, our peer recovery centers received a home makeover! As we celebrate our 50th anniversary of serving those struggling with addiction throughout Massachusetts and beyond, we thought it was time for some new digs.

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50 Years of Spectrum

As you may have heard, Spectrum Health Systems has been celebrating its 50th anniversary this year! We’ve come a long way since the company’s founding in 1969. As substance abuse has changed over the past 50 years, so too has Spectrum – in order to better treat individuals impacted by substance use disorders.

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How to Deal with Triggers in the Workplace

Many believe that addiction only affects the unemployed and homeless when, in reality, most are employed. In fact, of the estimated 96 million adults reported to have a substance use disorder, 72 percent are employed.

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Four Outstanding Spectrum Employees Celebrate 20 Years with Spectrum Health Systems

Four of our talented employees recently celebrated their 20th anniversary with Spectrum! Barbara Tingley, Lisa Blanchard, Earl Warren, and Carole Palaima have all dedicated decades to our organization. To show our gratitude for their hard work and support for Spectrum’s mission, we hosted a celebration luncheon for all home office staff. After lunch, CEO Kurt Isaacson asked why they have chosen to stay with Spectrum for so long.

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Mental Health Month: The Connection Between Addiction and Mental Health Grows

While mental health has become a widely talked about topic in recent years, May is the official observance for mental health awareness.

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50 Addiction Facts in 50 Days to Celebrate 50 Years of Spectrum Health Systems

50 days from today, the team at Spectrum Health Systems will be celebrating the company’s 50th anniversary. Since our inception, we’ve seen a lot of positive changes in the addiction treatment field and recovery community. While many improvements have been made, there’s still much work to be done.

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Addiction and Depression: A Vicious Cycle

According to the 2014 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 7.9 million Americans have been diagnosed with both depression and addiction. Each disease can be difficult to deal with on its own, so dealing with both at the same time is obviously more challenging. With depression being one of the most prevalent mental health disorders in the United States, it’s no surprise that many depressed individuals also suffer from a substance use disorder.

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Spectrum’s Domestic Violence Education Program Aims to Change Harmful Behavior, Beliefs and Attitudes

On average, 20 people each minute are physically abused by an intimate partner in the United States. Each year, this equates to more than 10 million women and men who suffer from domestic violence. With one in four women and one in nine men experiencing severe intimate partner physical violence, they are also likely suffering from sexual abuse, stalking, post-traumatic stress disorder, sexually transmitted diseases and more.

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How Spectrum and Massachusetts DOC Work Together to Treat Female Offenders

According to the American Civil Liberties Union, there are more than 219,000 women incarcerated across the United States. Many wonder what brought them in contact with the criminal justice system. Oftentimes, women serving time behind bars struggle with co-occurring disorders – the combination of mental health disorders and addiction – which can be a result of unhealthy relationships, dysfunctional home environments and past trauma.

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Inside Look: Driver Alcohol Education Program

If you’ve been following our Inside Look series, then you know of our comprehensive continuum of care for people with substance use disorders. What many people don’t know is that we also offer several court-ordered sessions that could fall under the category of preventative care. One such program is our Driver Alcohol Education Program.

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Get to Know Joe Rose, Spectrum Health Systems’ New Chief Financial Officer

As we continue to grow our services for people struggling with drug and alcohol addiction, we’re also growing our leadership team. We recently welcomed a new Chief Financial Officer, Joe Rose, to our senior leadership team.

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The Forgotten Population: Inmates in Recovery

An Airing Addiction Recap

 

In a recent study conducted by the Bureau of Justice Statistics, it was found that 84 percent of current inmates in the state prison system were under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol at the time of their crime. While that may come as a surprise, the need for addiction treatment within the walls of prison, should not.

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Are States Ready to Implement Medication-Assisted Treatment in Correctional Settings?

Recently, State Director Earl Warren and Regional Program Director Nicole Rendon from Spectrum’s Correctional Division conducted a workshop on medication-assisted treatment to administrators and behavioral health practitioners attending the American Correctional Association’s 148th Congress of Corrections in Minneapolis. Medication-assisted treatment (MAT) is being considered by many criminal justice authorities to help address the rising number of individuals addicted to opioids in the justice system.

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