The battle must be waged in Washington as well as in Florida’s rehab treatment centers
“My mother was one of the millions of people who suffer from the disease of addiction,” Jessica Hulsey Nickel, the founder and president of the Addiction Policy Forum, wrote in a recent column for InsideSources.com. She remembers standing on tiptoe as a child, trying to pour a glass of orange juice for her mother. “Something about the acidity would settle my mom’s stomach, slightly easing her wrenching symptoms of heroin withdrawal.”
The Addiction Policy Forum is a diverse partnership of organizations, policymakers and stakeholders committed to working together to elevate awareness around addiction and to improve national policy through a comprehensive response that includes prevention, treatment, recovery and criminal justice reform.
When it comes to the fighting back against the opioid epidemic, we must wage the battle on many fronts. At Spring Gardens, a luxury detox center in Florida, we help individuals begin their personal fight with our opiate detox therapies and Florida alcohol rehab program.
Organizations like the Addiction Policy Forum, take the fight to the national level. In January, the Addiction Policy Forum launched the Addiction Resource Center (ARC), an evolving online resource for individuals and families struggling with addiction. The new platform features information that will dispel many of the myths surrounding addiction and present the science behind substance use disorder in easy-to-read formats. While reliable information is essential for those battling addiction and those hoping to help a family member or friend, but the Addiction Resource Center is designed to go farther. It will serve as a guide for concerned individuals through a validated self-assessment tool, help them develop a proposed action plan, and direct them to resources in their local area.
“The ultimate goal of the ARC is to better equip patients and families with the knowledge and resources they need to understand what causes substance use disorders, how they change the brain, and what to look for in a treatment program,” the Addiction Policy Forum’s Chief Scientific Officer, Dr. Maureen Boyle, said in a statement. “Defeating this national crisis requires a new way of thinking. The ARC portal marks another major step forward in providing impacted families with the comprehensive resources they desperately need to address this chronic disease.”
The first phase focuses on local resources available for New Hampshire, Ohio, Maryland, and Minnesota. Visitors from other states will be directed to the national treatment finder from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Over the coming years, new states will be added with the goal of creating a more comprehensive resource that all Americans dealing with a substance use disorder can turn to for help. This marks a shift in thinking, those trying to solve the crisis acknowledge that means putting the right information into the hands of the patients and families who need it- making sure that we leverage the resources that already exist.
“For most families, finding resources to address substance use disorder is akin to finding a needle in a haystack. The ARC portal is easy-to-use and brings to light local resources currently available to those who need them most,” said Addiction Policy Forum Board Chairman Alan Mollohan, former Congressman of West Virginia’s first district.
The development of the ARC portal was funded in part by the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), Indivior and Alkermes.
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About the Author
Kelly Fitzgerald is a sober writer based in Southwest Florida who is best known for her personal blog The Adventures of a Sober Señorita. Her work has been published across the web including sites like The Huffington Post, Thought Catalog, Ravishly, SheKnows, Elite Daily, The Fix, Brit + Co, Addiction Unscripted and AfterPartyMagazine. She is currently writing a memoir.