Newswires
So Fla Non-Profit First Mover Into MAT Sober Living

07/19/2017 -ATIN- Fellowship Living, South Florida's largest non-profit sober living community, is beginning specialized services aimed at those in aftercare seeking to participate in medication-assisted therapies like Suboxone, which in particular is almost universally shunned as an inappropriate therapy throughout the region's large sober living housing and aftercare sector.

"Sober living providers don't like Suboxone, but we'll take SAMHSA's and ASAM's word for it any day of the week," says Rick Riccardi, CEO and founder at West Broward-based Fellowship. It has grown swiftly in recent months, expanding to 215 beds gender specific. "Both addiction docs and the federal mental health and addiction agency have for years said loudly that medication-assisted therapies are the gold standard for fighting addiction, particularly the horrific opiate abuse epidemic."

As statistics show, Suboxone MAT therapy is substantially more effective than traditional "talk therapy" addiction care, resulting in outcomes that are approximately 2x to 3x better a year following commencement of treatment. But Riccardi is still not prepared to fully buy into Suboxone maintenance, saying that those who come to Fellowship must have an end date in mind for jumping off buprenorphine, which is the active ingredient in brand-named Suboxone.

In effect, those on MAT at Fellowship will be on a much longer term tapper than the usual 7-30 days offered widely now, although Riccardi says the exact length of the tapper will vary depending on individual needs. They must also fully participate in the "recovery" model at the core of the Fellowship approach, AA meetings etc...

Currently, Fellowship has three apartments earmarked for the new MAT program. But Riccardi expects demand to be robust, in which case he says that at some point the program will be moved to a new, larger self-contained location.

Treatment Magazine

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