Mental health and addiction prevention and treatment programs and services are strategies (actions) undertaken to reduce a risk or create a positive change in the condition of someone suffering from mental illness or an addiction to a drug. There is an expected cause and effect between the service and the condition, that is that the service happens and the person suffering the condition gets better. An example of cause and effect is a baseball flying through the air and striking a glass window, which shatters. The cause is the baseball flying and the effect is the shattered window.
Cause and effect are not as simple as seeing glass break to determine results with people. We are complex and there are many things affecting us at any one time. It is difficult to prove exactly whether one thing or many things together create the changed condition.
The Mental Health & Recovery Board of Wayne and Holmes Counties requires service providers to use Evidence Based Practices. Researchers have studied these services for their effect. We would like you to understand what we do and the Service Strategy presentations listed in this section are examples of what we do its effectiveness and the nature of the problems the services we use help to change.
Hello, I am your neighbor and I live, shop and worship with you and 114,500 other Wayne Countian. I am a recovering opiate addict. Before I became addicted to opiates, I had been a successful nurse for 13 years, married with three children. I had a full-time job and a supportive family, I could not have been happier. How could I be an addict? I still remember my first prescription for opiates. Looking back now, I feel like I was given a death sentence with that prescription. I had no idea what that pill was going to take from me. After a few weeks I was addicted. I lost my job, career, marriage, family, and earned myself a felony conviction. Today I have five years sober and clean. With the help of counseling, I was able to learn how dangerous prescriptions are and the tools necessary to live a sober life. Prescription opiates lead to the use of heroin; I have never met a heroin addict who has not started their addiction career without the use of a prescription opiate. Education, prevention, and treatment are the only way to address this epidemic.
Our aim with this project has been to assist individuals addicted to Opiates to safely and comfortably go through withdrawal and to have fewer cravings as they enter into the initial stages of recovery.
We targeted our services towards Adults from Wayne/Holmes Counties with an Opiate Drug Addiction diagnosis, who have requested detoxification treatment services at Liberty Center Connections. During the last year, we were able to serve 70 Wayne/Holmes residents with stories similar to the one above.
According to Ohio Substance Abuse Monitoring Network (OSAM, 2014), heroin availability has increased. There is a high availability of heroin in the community and throughout the state (OSAM 2014
One-third of Liberty Center Connections’ clients were given a diagnosis related to Opioid Use/Dependence which has increased from the previous year. We know that clients who are engaged in treatment are more likely to get better. Sixty-one percent of clients remained engaged in services after admission last year.
Addicted Opiate users who withdrawal without recovery supports are at high risk of relapse, overdosing and death. Users who have quit using and then begin to use again are at high risk of overdose due to an unperceived decrease in their tolerance for drug
A 20-year-old male named Joe* is referred for employment services. He is lacking in basic education and doesn’t understand boundaries. He is currently receiving SSDI and has never held competitive employment.
Who are we trying to reach?
The Counseling Center’s Employment Services are designed to assist persons with severe and persistent mental illnesses and include Job Assessment, Job Development, Job Placement and Retention services and these are provided based on evidence-based practice for Supported Employment (OHIO SE CCOE).
What kinds of services can people receive? How many are getting services now?
Employment Services work to improve each participant’s job seeking skills, to provide support during the job placement process and with job coaching once the placement occurs. An integral part of the program is to provide ongoing support to increase successful adjustment to competitive employment and ultimately increased job retention. Adjusting to the workforce can be difficult, but this difficulty is certainly compounded for persons with mental illnesses and substance abuse problems.
Some of the skills participants need to develop include: completing job applications, writing resumes, and interviewing. Concentration on personal and interpersonal relations with supervisors and coworkers, appropriate work attire, punctuality, grooming and hygiene, socialization, transportation training, budgeting, coping skills and strategies, managing psychiatric symptoms in an appropriate manner and the development of natural supports are also included.
What recovery goals are in place for those in this program?
Some of the Counseling Center’s Employment Services FY15 Goals included:
- 150 additional mental health clients will be provided with some type of supported employment service.
- 45 people of this group will achieve some sort of work or other meaningful employment.
- The estimated economic return on investment for this additional investment will be more than $2 in wages for each $ investment in this service.
- 15% of Employment Services participants will be transitional aged youth.
Are there any outcomes related to those goals?
As of the end of April in FY15, the following goals were not only achieved, they were exceeded:
- 170 individuals participated in the program.
- 59 individuals have been competitively employed.
- Three inmates linked to supportive employment from the “Closing the Revolving Door Corrections program.
- 28% of Employment Services participants are transitional aged youth.
Is there anything else we should know about employment services at The Counseling Center?
During FY14, the Employment Services team focused on the legal barriers that impede clients employment who have a felony or a misdemeanor, ie: A criminal record, holes in their employment and the lack of personal recommendations needed to obtain a job. Employment Services developed a volunteerism roster of places the clients could volunteer and, obtain employment skills. After the client volunteered on a regular schedule and satisfactorily, they were then able to obtain a recommendation when applying for a paid position. In addition, the Employment Services staff attended expungement training, and could guide clients who need to seal their record in order to obtain employment.
So, what happened to Joe?
While going through services, his ability to follow instructions and work within a structure has improved. He has exhibited increased mental endurance and has improved his work ethic. To improve his ability to obtain a recommendation for a competitive employment position he is under the supervision of his job coach. He volunteers once a week for an hour at one location and two hours at another. He searches for employment one hour or more per week and has increased his social awareness and academic capabilities.
*Name has been changed to protect confidentiality.