Road To Recovery

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  • April 2015 Episode: Substance Use Among Youth and Young Adults: Pathways to Health and Lifelong Success
    • This episode focuses on the complex challenges faced by America’s high school and college students. It examines the connection between increased academic and emotional stress and substance misuse, such as underage drinking on college campuses and prescription drug misuse.

  • May 2015 Episode: Healing and Empowerment: Families on the Road to Recovery
    • This show examines the benefits of peer support and networks aimed at families as well as the individual member in recovery.

  • June 2015 Episode: Screening and Assessments for Mental and/or Substance Use Disorders: The Role of Primary Care
    • The episode’s panel reviews Screening, Brief Intervention, Referral, and Treatment (SBIRT) elements. They look at how it has and can continue to be incorporated into primary health care settings to screen for mental and/or substance use disorders and help reduce overprescribing of medications. In addition, a preview of the collaboration between SAMHSA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention gives health care professionals who prescribe opioids a framework for safer prescribing.

  • July 2015 Episode: Overcoming Trauma and Violence: The Power of Resiliency
    • This episode explores the three “Es” of trauma: Event(s), Experience of Event(s), and Effect. It also emphasizes the fulfilling path to resiliency that helps people tap into their strengths.

  • August 2015 Episode: Preventing and Addressing Homelessness Among People With Mental and/or Substance Use Disorders
    • This episode examines the causes of homelessness for people with mental and/or substance use disorders. Panelists discuss various evidence-based models that address homelessness. They also highlight current programs that are successful at reducing these conditions and that are providing health, screenings, and wellness resources.

  • September 2015 Episode: New Technologies for Whole Body Health and Wellness
    • The episode reviews SAMHSA’s new mobile applications and interactive tools. These include an anti-bullying app, the suicide prevention phone line, and innovative mobile resources to help prevent underage drinking.

  • April 2016: Generational Issues Affecting Recovery: From Childhood to Grandparenthood
    • Mental or substance use disorders often affect several generations of the same family. The impact of parental mental or substance use disorders on children is significant—affecting emotional, social, and behavioral patterns and well-being early in their lives. These problems can impact the overall health and well-being of children in the home. Traumatic experiences during childhood can increase the risk for a range of behavioral and physical problems in adulthood, including substance misuse and mental health issues. However, early intervention with these families can interrupt these intergenerational patterns. This show will touch on how generational issues affect the prevalence of substance use disorders across the generational family spectrum. It will also touch on behavioral health problems among older adults, including the special considerations for mental or substance use disorders among this population (e.g., marijuana misuse, mixing medications with alcohol and illicit substances, lower levels of treatment seeking, and co-occurring medical conditions). The panelists will review approaches to treatment and recovery for older people—including the development of effective support networks—as well as efforts and resources for these individuals and their families.

  • May 2016: Criminal Justice System Involvement: The Role of Mental or Substance Use Disorders
    • Many individuals who come in contact with the criminal or juvenile justice system have a mental or substance use disorder. According to data from SAMHSA’s Treatment Episode Data Set (TEDS), the criminal justice system is the major source of referrals to substance use treatment, so that people on probation or parole make up a significant number of treatment admissions. A similar picture emerges for juvenile justice, according to SAMHSA’s adolescent substance abuse treatment grant programs. This show will focus on the involvement of adults and young people with mental or substance use disorders in the criminal justice system and the unique treatment and support services needed to help them achieve the ingredients for lifelong recovery—health, home, purpose, and community. The episode will highlight efforts and resources for people with behavioral health conditions who are involved in the criminal justice system (including the SAMHSA GAINS Center for Behavioral Health and Justice Transformation, the use of mental health courts, and peer services during incarceration and at re-entry). Emerging issues in behavioral health and the criminal justice system, such as trauma and the need for trauma-informed care, will be covered. Discussion will focus on re-entry into the community, and panelists will examine efforts and resources to provide treatment and recovery support to individuals who are released from incarceration (e.g., help with accessing benefits, including health care through the Affordable Care Act; linkage to treatment providers and peer-support groups; job placement, training, and education; and stable housing).

  • June 2016: Preventing and Addressing Suicide: Everyone Plays a Role
    • Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States, with more than 42,000 suicides in 2014. It is the second leading cause of death for young people aged 15 to 24 and third leading cause of death for young people aged 10 to 14. In 2014, 9.4 million adults aged 18 or older thought seriously about trying to kill themselves in the past 12 months, including 2.7 million who made suicide plans and 1.1 million who made a nonfatal suicide attempt, according to data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH). Suicide has a devastating impact on family and friends—who experience complex grief reactions, including guilt, anger, abandonment, denial, and helplessness—as well as society. This show will highlight suicide among particular groups, and will also cover SAMHSA’s suicide prevention efforts/resources (including SAMHSA’s National Suicide Prevention Lifeline [telephone hotline] and Suicide Safe [a prevention app for health care providers]). This show will examine the treatment and support needed by individuals who have attempted suicide and their family members, as well as people in bereavement from suicide, as they find their own unique paths to recovery. The discussion will highlight the role that peers can play in supporting people experiencing mental or substance use disorders and the family members of those who have attempted suicide, as well as include family-to-family support for those bereaved by suicide.

  • July 2016: Family Recovery: Prevention and Treatment Approaches for Diverse LGBT Families
    • America’s families are as diverse as America itself. The U.S. Supreme Court ruling that the Constitution guarantees the right to same-sex marriage and the extension of federal marriage benefits to these couples in all states has highlighted family issues for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community. LGBT individuals and families are culturally diverse, with 4.6 percent of African Americans, 4.0 percent of Hispanics/Latinos, 4.3 percent of Asians, and 3.2 percent of Whites identifying as LGBT in a 2012 Gallup poll. This show will focus on the experiences of LGBT individuals in general with some consideration to ethnic and racial communities, and the impact of acceptance or conflict about sexual orientation and gender identity on behavioral health. Panelists will discuss behavioral health disparities within the LGBT community, and will examine the impact of the Affordable Care Act in the provision of behavioral health services for this community. Panelists will also discuss the treatment and recovery needs of LGBT individuals. The show will highlight SAMHSA’s efforts and culturally competent resources that support members of the LGBT community as they work to improve their health and wellness, live self-directed lives, and strive to reach their full potential.

  • August 2016: Preventing and Addressing Opioid Misuse and Abuse: Our Nation’s Challenge
    • When used as directed, prescription opioids are safe and effective and provide much needed relief to those in pain. However, prescription opioid nonmedical use or misuse (i.e., not following a prescription or using pain relievers prescribed to someone else)—which can progress to opioid use disorder—remains a significant problem in the United States. In 2014, 4.3 million people aged 12 or older were nonmedical users of pain relievers during the past month. Approximately 1.9 million people aged 12 or older experienced prescription pain reliever use disorder during the past year in 2013. The United States also witnessed a near quadrupling of overdoses from prescription opioids from 1999 to 2011. A significant public health concern is the transition from prescription opioid misuse to heroin use.
  • September 2016: Building Family Resiliency: Supporting Recovery
    • Families, in their many and diverse forms, are central to our lives and well-being. This show will explore family and relationship factors that are protective and promote recovery from mental or substance use disorders. The discussion will focus on how families who have experienced behavioral health problems achieve and continue to strengthen the four dimensions of recovery: health, home, purpose, and community. Panelists will discuss how families remain hopeful as they face the daily challenges of preventing relapse, what they do if relapse occurs (ways that they seek help), the education of family members, and techniques that help them stay on the path to recovery. The special considerations for members of the military who are in recovery will be discussed—including how various branches prepare family members to support the recovery of loved ones with mental or substance use disorders (e.g., Family Readiness Officers in the U.S. Marines ). The show will cover how certain religious or cultural beliefs, including values or practices connected with a strong purpose in life, enhance the resiliency of people in recovery from mental or substance use disorders. Panelists will discuss protective cultural and linguistic factors among members of the Latino/Hispanic, African-American, and Native American communities. Discussion will examine holistic approaches to recovery—including diet, exercise, and expressive techniques (art, music) — as well as SAMHSA’s Wellness Initiative. The show will highlight SAMHSA resources for promoting resilience to behavioral health problems, including those focused on cultural competence. Families are critical in supporting their members in recovery from mental or substance use disorders and helping them build on strengths, talents, coping abilities, resources, and inherent values to live self-directed lives and cope with challenges. The show will cover engagement of family members in the recovery process, protective factors for families in recovery, and SAMHSA recovery support resources.

  • April 2017: Collegiate Recovery: Back to the Dorm
    • At institutions of higher learning across the nation, many individuals are dedicated to generating a new wave of campus-driven recovery supports for students.  They are part of a movement that has been growing since the late 1970s and continues to respond to the significant behavioral health conditions that can arise before or during the college years.  For example, half of all lifetime mental disorders start by the mid-teen years. Only one third of young adults aged 18 to 25 with any mental illness received mental health services in 2014. Additionally, binge drinking on college campuses is common, with approximately 40 percent of students engaging in this behavior during the past month in 2013. Panelists will discuss collegiate recovery in diverse higher education settings and ways to support students who are initiating or maintaining recovery from mental and/or substance use disorders.  The show will also explore housing and other types of supports amongst institutions of higher learning nationwide, including specific policies and programs, and organizational efforts to expand this model across the country.

  • May 2017: Providing Treatment and Recovery Support in Rural and Frontier Communities
    • About 46.2 million people in the United States (14 percent of the population) lived in non-metropolitan (rural) communities in 2015. The nation’s rural and frontier communities face some challenges when addressing behavioral health conditions and gaining access to treatment and recovery services—including an insufficient number of specialist providers and models of care that may not consider rural-specific issues (e.g., geographical distance or the need for transportation). However, these communities have developed and applied creative approaches—especially telehealth technologies and innovative methods of service delivery—to provide access to treatment and recovery supports for residents of rural and frontier communities.  Panelists will discuss the particular issues in addressing the behavioral health needs that are relevant for these communities, share innovative approaches to addressing them in remote areas, and review the challenges faced when attempting to reduce the treatment gap for rural and frontier residents.  They will also address the special considerations of Native American/American Indian communities living in rural areas.

  • June 2017: Community Health Centers and First Responders: Strengthening Communities through Education
    • Community Health Centers (CHCs) and first responders provide a vital and necessary role in addressing the critical behavioral health needs of communities—including the current opioid overdose epidemic.  CHCs provide vital primary care and preventive services regardless of ability to pay.  These facilities serve approximately 1 in 14 people (1 in 10 children) in the United States. CHCs provide services for mental and/or substance use disorders (e.g., counseling, developmental screenings, crisis services, and detoxification) that are critical for helping people on a path to recovery. This show will discuss the essential work of the nation’s more than 10 million first responders—including police officers, fire fighters, emergency medical technicians, and other emergency personnel—in dealing with opioid overdoses, traumatic situations (e.g., natural and other disasters), and individuals in crisis. Providing first responders (and others) with the opioid overdose medication, naloxone, is a key aspect of federal actions to address the crisis.  This show will describe the training first responders need to approach individuals with a serious mental illness in crisis in an appropriate and safe manner.  We will also explore the benefits of interventions such as mental health first aid and psychological first aid, as well as the importance of self-care for first responders.

  • July 2017: Bringing Together Mental and Substance Use Disorder Treatment and Recovery Services
    • Many efforts are underway to build a behavioral health system that enables Americans to find effective treatments and services in their communities for mental and/or substance use disorders. Historically, the mental health and substance use service systems have been separate, and not well coordinated.  Increased collaboration between the mental and substance use treatment systems is key to the improvement of services overall.  Panelists will discuss some of the challenges with integration at the federal, state, and local levels and discuss the benefits and successful outcomes when integration is embraced.  This show will explore the integrated mental and substance use disorder services and recovery models currently adopted in some states.  In addition, panelists will discuss the findings and recommendations of the 2016 Surgeon General’s report, Facing Addiction In America: The Surgeon General’s Report on Alcohol, Drugs, and Health.




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