The opioid crisis keeps spreading throughout the US, and more and more people find themselves in need of an expensive substance abuse treatment to safely and successfully complete an alcohol and drug rehab. Opioid addiction is a serious matter that shouldn’t be taken lightly and, if you wish to know more about it, you can take a look at the related article on the NIH website.
In the whole nation, there are about 15,000 addiction treatment facilities, you can check some in your area by using this Addiction Resource tool; however, only a third of that number actually prescribes a medication called Buprenorphine, which is supposed to prevent relapses by easing the withdrawal process.
Ophelia is an organization that aims to offer the best medications and treatments for addicts without all the baggage that comes with rehab. For this reason, the platform recently announced that $2.7 million were raised to help individuals who are struggling with opioid addiction medication-assisted treatment (MAT) and are in need of being treated for drug abuse.
In this article, we’ll see how they plan on helping opioid addicts and describe what exactly rehab 2.0 is.
According to Zack Gray, Ophelia’s Co-Founder, the average opioid-addicted American shares many of the characteristics a regular American has. This happens because a lot of the individuals who now need rehab for drug addiction got hooked on opioids by accident, probably because they needed a painkiller after surgery.
As of today, only 5% of licensed practitioners are allowed to prescribe the drug addiction treatment for opioids; therefore, even though the healthcare system often prescribes opioids to deal with pain, the same system rarely allows the antidote for opioid addiction to be sold. Needless to say, this process can make substance abuse rehabilitation even more difficult.
Even the National Institute on Drug Abuse confirmed that these medications could potentially be useful for a lot of people who need to go through drug and alcohol programs; however, they still remain underutilized. More specifically, less than one substance abuse center out of two provides medication for opioid SA treatment.
Gray also informed us that around 90% of opioid addicts are likely to relapse within three months without the proper medications. Moreover, these individuals might decide to hit the streets and enter dangerous environments in order to buy drugs from the black market.
However, now there’s another option; Ophelia is trying to assist these people by providing medication-assisted treatment along with therapy. When an individual is deemed fit for this rehab drug treatment, a licensed clinician will prescribe proper medication and regularly monitor the patient’s progress.
Everything is done online, and Zack Gray says that even though the subscription model costs $195 per month without insurance, most clients only pay around $100.
Rehab 2.0: What Is It?
Other than offering a MAT option to its clients, Ophelia also wants to give them a better alternative than participating in a drug and alcohol rehab program. CEO Zack Gray stated that usually rehabilitation programs come for a very high price, and there are many upfront requirements the patients need to fulfill, not to mention the need to take months off work to participate.
According to Ophelia’s Co-Founder, rehab, as it is today, is expensive and ineffective; therefore, they’re trying to reinvent the way it should be.
Especially during the Covid-19 outbreak, we’re currently experiencing, an online alternative to regular rehabilitation is needed more than ever. Due to social distancing measures, group therapy is limited; therefore, Ophelia’s new methods are becoming more and more popular, even though its services are only available in Pennsylvania for the time being.
Moreover, social distancing measures aren’t the only reason Gray’s startup is having a lot of success. Many opioid addicts find their drugs on the black market, and they keep using them to avoid withdrawal symptoms. Now that the border restrictions are a lot stricter due to Covid-19 regulations, importing these drugs illegally has become a lot more difficult, and supplies are hard to find.
Because of this, more individuals have started looking for cheaper programs to deal with their addictions, such as the ones Ophelia offers.
Although Ophelia is still a startup, it’s already trying to make a positive change in order to find a better and cheaper substance abuse treatment program for addicts.