Tag Archives: recovery

Patients in Recovery Facing Discrimination from Post-acute Care Medical Facilities

Twenty-nine percent of private post-acute care medical facilities in MA rejected certain hospitalized patients’ referrals for admission according to the results of a new study. The rejected patients in this instance had OUD (opioid use disorder) and were explicitly discriminated against in this instance.

Scientists at Boston Medical Center (BMC) were responsible for conducting the research. They also discovered that in 15% of rejections for SUD (substance abuse disorder), the reason for rejection was for one of the following reasons:
1. The patient already had a SUD diagnosis.
2. The patient was taking either methadone or buprenorphine. These medications are used to treat OUD (opioid use disorder).

The medical facilities had been involved in “documented and explicit” forms of discrimination against patients. The results were published in the Journal of Addiction Medicine.

What are Post-acute Care Medical Facilities?

Post-acute care medical facilities provide several services, depending on a patient’s needs. They are meant for patients who continue to need care following discharge from the hospital where the family is unable to provide it.

Skilled nursing facilities provide short and long-term care for patients recovering from a stroke, knee replacement, hip replacement, heart/respiratory issues, neurological diseases, and more. Assisted living facilities offer short-term care (14-30 days) focusing on safety while transitioning between hospital and home. They offer assistance for patients who need wound care, nursing observation, physical or speech therapy, nursing observation, fall management, etc.

Electronic Health Records Form Basis for Study

Researchers examined data taken from electronic health records (EHR) from adult BMC patients. Specifically, they wanted to track referrals to private facilities made in 2018. The scientists made categories for reason given for rejections and made special note of those mentioning substance use or addiction treatment medications. The records in these categories were considered discriminatory.

Their findings were as follows:

    • Two hundred nineteen hospitalizations at BMC led to 1,648 referrals to 285 private, post-acute care facilities in MA. Of these, 1,348 (81.8%) were rejected.
    • Fifteen percent of the rejections were deemed discriminatory.
    • One hundred and five patients were rejected because they being treated with methadone or buprenorphine. Ninety-eight patients were rejected because they had been diagnosed with substance abuse.
    • Eighty-three of the facilities (29.1%) had a minimum of one discriminatory rejection based on the review of patient records.

Private Facilities Previously Sanctioned for Discrimination

In 2016, the Department of Public Health cautioned private facilities that they should not be rejecting patients based on a history of substance abuse. In 2018 and again the following year, the US Attorney’s office for the District of Massachusetts settled with two private facilities for their discriminatory practices, which meant the facilities were violating the Americans with Disabilities Act.

The study authors called for more research to ultimately reduce these discriminatory practices. The Massachusetts Department Board of Health paid for a project starting in 2019. It provided technical support and training for better access to addiction treatment medications in skilled nursing facilities and long-term care homes.




10 Ways to Beat Opiate Addiction – Infographic

Opiate addiction can be tough to beat. Emotionally you may feel overwhelmed, drained or otherwise unable to kick the habit alone. Physically you feel awful and as if the only possible way to feel better is by taking one more pill or using one more dose of heroin. No matter what your chosen opioid is, these tips will help you kick the habit and come out free from the addiction that’s currently in control of your life.

For help finding an inpatient rehab center that will guide you through the healing process, call 1-888-605-7779 today.

infographic ways to beat opiate addiction

The first 5 tips to help you get clean are:

  1. Seek Help with Detox
  2. Slowly Taper to Reduce Withdrawal Impact
  3. Use Over-the-Counter Medications as Needed
  4. Consider Methadone or other Maintenance Medications
  5. Seek the Help of a Support Group

Seek Help with Detox

The assistance of a controlled medical detox facility in inpatient rehab can help you to SAFELY overcome opioid withdrawal. According to WebMD, you will likely need some help overcoming withdrawal symptoms such as:

  • cravings
  • nausea
  • chills
  • vomiting
  • diarrhea

Medical detox will not only provide you with the support you need, but also the around-the-clock care necessary to ensure your safety during withdrawal. This is especially important if you are addicted to methadone or if you have been using high doses of opiates for a very long time. As your body adjusts to life without the narcotics you may suffer from serious complications in the early days of withdrawal. Symptoms may include lowered heart rate or other complications.

Slowly Taper to Reduce Withdrawal Impact

Daily reduction in the overall amount of the drug that you are taking can help you to reduce the impact of withdrawal on your body–but this is ONLY if you are able to taper the drug without continued use in excess of what a tapering schedule recommends. Most addicts are unable to effectively taper medication without the help of a doctor or other healthcare professional. However, when under the guidance of a medical practitioner in an inpatient rehab center, you can slowly taper the drug off reducing the impact of withdrawal as the body adjusts to the small change in the dose being taken over time.

Use Over-the-Counter Medications as Needed

Whether you are withdrawing in a residential detox program or on your own at home, over-the-counter medications such as tylenol, ibuprofen, and anti-diarrhea medications can help to reduce symptoms. If you’re in a residential rehab center or detox setting, you may also be given prescription medications to help ease symptoms of opiate withdrawal. These medications may include librium, ativan, valium, or other forms of anti-anxiety or anti-seizure medications to reduce the stress you feel during this challenging time.

Consider Methadone or other Maintenance Medications

Methadone is a widely accepted opioid replacement therapy that has been used to reduce cravings and minimize withdrawal symptoms for many years but it’s not for everyone. Before you even consider methadone or other maintenance medications such as buprenorphine or naloxone or Suboxone you MUST seek the help of a medical provider. Failure to seek medical treatment may lead to serious complications and can reduce the overall effectiveness of these medication maintenance programs. Individuals who take methadone or other maintenance drugs for opioid recovery generally find themselves on a 12-month or longer recovery plan that includes slowly tapering the medications off to reduce withdrawal impact.

Seek the Help of a Support Group

Many different types of support groups exist to help those who are addicted to opiates and other drugs or alcohol. The most common support group is Narcotics Anonymous (NA). Meetings take place around the world in public settings and are generally open to anyone interested in learning more about the 12-step recovery and healing process. You don’t have to be sober to attend an NA Meeting, but you do have to WANT sobriety and you do have to be willing to listen to others and provide support in this environment. Other forms of support include family support groups and programs that are offered in inpatient rehab centers. For help finding the support you need, call 1-888-605-7779 today.

5 ways to stay clean and overcome opiate addiction

The additional tips listed to help you remain clean and sober during the early days of opiate addiction recovery include.

6.  Consider Residential Rehab or Inpatient Rehab

7. Don’t Be Afraid to Seek Outpatient Rehab

8. Remain Positive Despite the Worry

9. Learn How to Cope without Drugs

10. Stay Active and Involved in Your Recovery

Consider Residential or Inpatient Rehab

During residential rehab you are given around-the-clock care in a supportive environment where the only thing that matters is your recovery. Medications are provided to ensure your safety. 24-hour care is provided and you will receive counseling, therapy, and support as needed. ONLY inpatient rehab can provide you with the treatment support you need around-the-clock. While it may seem scary at first to think about leaving your family and friends behind, living in a residential rehab center for 30, 60 or 90-days can change your life. If you’re ready to get sober, call 1-888-605-7779 and we’ll help you find a local rehab center that can help.

Don’t Be Afraid to Seek Outpatient Rehab

If you attend an inpatient rehab program, your next step will be outpatient care. If you choose not to go into residential treatment, you likely still need counseling and support in order to get sober and to stay sober. Treatment in an outpatient rehab center offers flexibility that works around your busy schedule allowing you to remain actively involved in your family, work or school while also receiving medically assisted treatment for opiate addiction. Counseling and support are provided during normal business hours allowing you to get the help you need in a slightly less invasive environment.

Remain Positive Despite the Worry

It’s easy to fall victim to your own worry–especially when you’re trying so hard to overcome opiate addiction. The best advice you can be given is to remain positive. Seek ways to avoid triggers. Find opportunities for positive change. Don’t be afraid to set meaningful goals that will help you to achieve your dreams–staying sober is all about staying positive in recovery. Always do your best to have an “I can do this” attitude and you’ll find each day comes a little bit easier than the last.

Learn How to Cope without Drugs

Emotionally, opiate addiction takes over your feelings and you get a sense that you can no longer “feel good” or “feel ok” without drugs. Learning how to cope with triggers, stress, or emotional upset can be one of the most challenging elements of recovery. Stress relief activities such as exercise can help as can spending time with a pet or loved one when you’re feeling like you want to use. Relapse becomes a dangerous side effect of recovery as you inch your way into the future of sobriety. Learning how to cope with life in recovery without returning to the use of opiates such as heroin or prescription painkillers ensures that you remain on the right side and that you do not fall victim to relapse.

Stay Active in Recovery

Staying active means not only taking part in an exercise program or hobby to pass the time but also to remain active in your recovery efforts. Don’t let your guard down and don’t allow yourself to feel as if you can just let your feelings go. Seek support, stay involved in your counseling and therapy sessions, and do anything you can to beat cravings besides allowing yourself to slip back into your previous habits of drug use. If you do relapse, seek immediate counseling and support to help you get back on track–call our helpline at 1-888-605-7779 today to find a rehab center that can further help you to achieve your recovery goals.

Reducing Guilt and Shame in Recovery through Inpatient Rehab

You come into rehab with this level of guilt and shame that seemingly cannot be overcome. You try and try, but you struggle with the past and the situations that you can’t change. But inpatient rehab can help you to learn how to overcome what happened in the past and effectively cope with the shame that you suffered as an addict.

Your first step is to accept that addiction is a chronic disease not a moral problem. It’s not something that makes you weak or otherwise incompetent. As soon as YOU accept that your addiction is a disease but that you can receive treatment for the disease, you’ll be on your way to recovery and healing.

Inpatient rehab can help you overcome guilt and prevent the shame that you’re feeling from derailing your recovery efforts. Call our helpline at 1-888-605-7779 today to find out more about how rehab can help you.

Why Does Guilt Follow You?

It’s common to be ashamed of who you have become or of the things you did as an addict. But is “who” you have become “who” you will always be? If you’re feeling guilty about the things you have done during your life addicted to drugs or alcohol, you’re not alone! Sadly, the stigma of addiction creates guilt and shame which prevents the vast majority of those addicted from seeking the professional help necessary for recovery.

Guilt anchors to you like a backpack filled with heavy weights. It makes it feel impossible to accept what has happened and even more impossible to overcome the past transgressions that have led you to treatment. But why? Why do you hold all that guilt?

According to Psychology Today, “if shame is a feeling of not being worthy of connection, then guilt is a feeling that we can make ourselves worthy.” One thing we know for certain when it comes to guilt is that it’s not an “easy” topic. People feel guilt for all different things and the way that we process it is different for everyone.

How Shame and Guilt Derail Recovery Efforts

The shame and guilt you carry around with you can jeopardize every recovery effort you have in place. Paired with stress, triggers, cravings and the constant urge to use—you’re stuck in a situation where your recovery could be completely derailed before you even realize what hit you.

What can you do to STOP the guilt and START your healing journey? How can you drop the baggage that’s hindering your recovery efforts and KNOW that you’re moving forward without an ounce of shame in your game?

You need help! Call our helpline at 1-888-605-7779 today and we’ll connect you with a support specialist that can assist you in coping with the guilt that you’re holding because of your addiction. We’ll guide you through the healing process and set you on a path to recovery.

Addiction destroys your self-esteem. If you already struggled with low self-esteem prior to using drugs or alcohol, then feelings of shame are likely to stick with you well into your recovery efforts. Often times addiction also leads to feelings of reduced self-worth. The physical, psychological and emotional trauma that occurs before and during an addiction to drugs or alcohol can leave a lasting impact on your ability to cope.

Many victims feel like addiction is their fault. Like the trauma or other harmful experiences that occurred during an addiction are the result of their actions. Sometimes this is true, but more often, the trauma that occurs prior to an addiction or during an addiction has nothing to do with any “fault” of the addict. In fact, the addict (YOU) is are a victim of these situations and the guilt you carry is usually due to low self-esteem.

How Inpatient Rehab Helps

Through rehabilitation you can learn to drop the guilt and shame that is hindering your recovery. Many programs are offered in inpatient rehab to assist you in the healing process including:

  • Yoga and meditation to help you relax.
  • Journaling to keep track of feelings and to help you to understand WHY you feel the way you do.
  • Suicide prevention and medications to assist in the healing from depression, anxiety or other psychological disorders.
  • Support to guide you through the powerful emotions that are driving your guilt and shame.
  • Counseling and therapy to help you learn how to cope with the past, prepare for the future and live sober day-by-day.

It’s important to note that guilt is not something you have to be burdened with for your rest of your life. Inpatient rehab will help you to cope with guilt, overcome it and move on with your life. Once you get involved in daily therapy and counseling, you can take additional proactive steps toward ridding yourself of the guilt that you’re carrying.

What’s next? Call our helpline at 1-888-605-7779 and we’ll connect you with an inpatient rehab center that can help you get started on the road to recovery.