Making Strides in Behavioral Health and Addiction Services

by Debbie Simon, UnityPoint Health

In October, UnityPoint Health – Peoria shared exciting news about our vision for expanded and enhanced behavioral health and addiction recovery services. Next year, we’ll begin making a multi-million-dollar investment in our facilities and programs, marking a significant step forward in our history as a leader in the field. I’d like to share some of our plans and highlight the services we currently provide.

In 2017, we’ll introduce intensive outpatient behavioral health and addiction recovery services for adolescents through the Illinois Institute for Addiction Recovery (IIAR). These services are designed to fill the gap between inpatient services and traditional outpatient services. With this addition, the Illinois Institute for Addiction Recovery is leading the way in combining mental health and addiction recovery services for adolescents in an outpatient setting. This new program will be fully integrated into UnityPoint Health – Peoria’s continuum of care, which provides the most complete and advanced behavioral health and addiction recovery services in the region.

Our commitment to addiction recovery services is part of our legacy. The community’s first hospital-based chemical dependency center opened in 1979 at Proctor Hospital, now UnityPoint Health – Proctor. From its inception, the program treated adults and young adults with co-existing disorders, including chemical dependency and mental illness. In 1993, the Chemical Dependency Center began treating other addictive behaviors, including compulsive gambling and spending, growing into what is now the Illinois Institute for Addiction Recovery, headquartered in the Ameel Rashid Center in Peoria, with additional locations in Bloomington, Springfield and Harvey.

IIAR services include detoxification, inpatient care, addiction day treatment, intensive outpatient treatment and aftercare. Individual, group and family therapy are essential components of the program, in addition to education, relapse prevention and 12-step meeting attendance. In 2003, the IIAR established one of the first chronic pain and addiction treatment programs in the country, and in 2016, it introduced a special program that trains family members of patients in recovery to dispense a life-saving medication in the case of a drug overdose. Through this program and partnerships with local agencies, the IIAR is on the forefront of the fight against addiction in our community.

“Addiction medicine is an exciting field—one that is rapidly expanding its scientific base,” notes Dr. Kirk Moberg, medical director of the Illinois Institute for Addiction Recovery. “As a result, new treatments have been and are being formulated to further optimize patient outcomes. The IIAR is committed to the utilization of evidence-based, best practices in the treatment of the disease of addiction.”

We are working through the development of additional new programs, and expect to share more about those soon. As a leader in behavioral health and home of the Illinois Institute for Addiction Recovery, we believe advancing expertise and access is part of our mission. 2017 will be an important year for behavioral health and addiction recovery services in our community, and I look forward to sharing our progress with you as we move forward. iBi

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