Across the country, emergency departments are treating rising numbers of patients harmed by using alcohol, opioids, methamphetamine, and other substances. Between 2006 and 2014, emergency room visits for alcohol and substance use disorders increased about 75 percent. Once these individuals have been medically cleared, they are usually discharged with little support or treatment to fight their addictions.
Daviess County Community Corrections and Daviess Community Hospital have teamed up to offer Peer Recovery Services through the Emergency Room and Intensive Care Unit for those that are admitted with a drug or alcohol related impairment/disorder.
Laura Petty, program director for the Daviess County Community Corrections, was successful in obtaining a grant which provides funding for a full-time counselor. “We are fortunate to have received this funding for the next 2 years,” said Petty. “This program is needed to help individuals get on the right track.”
The county will work with the emergency department at Daviess Community Hospital to identify possible overdose cases and allow the counselor to get involved with that client before he or she ever enters the court system. The group will then work with local police departments to identify potential clients in non-arrest response efforts, new clients coming from prison or jail and pre-trial and post-conviction clients.
Brian Peek, a certified Peer Recovery Counselor, has been hired to facilitate the program. “Patients opened up to recovery coaches in ways they don’t with doctors or nurses,” says Peek. “As a coach, I advocate for patients and partners with the hospital’s medical staff to make sure patients get the care and support they need while at the hospital and after they leave.”
The coach provides hands-on support when needed. They call, text, or email the patient for weeks or months after discharge to provide ongoing guidance, support, and mentoring.
“I think it is great that a hospital this size can offer this program,” said Peek. “You typically see this type of program in much larger hospitals.”
“From the hospital’s standpoint, we see the need to take a more active role in helping patients access the resources they need to get sober, stay out of the hospital, and thrive,” said Scott Sell, Director of Strategic Development at Daviess Community Hospital.
This new service is an important part of continuing to meet the needs of our community as assessed through our triennial Community Health Needs Assessment. The hospital is making a concerted effort to address the assessed needs and this is a tangible by-product of that work. We are grateful for community partners like Daviess County Community Corrections as we all work to make our community a healthier place to live, work, & play.
For information about Peer Recovery Counseling, call 812-259-4755 or email email@example.com