The issue of housing is an issue at the heart of the social services overlap with health care, and combining housing with some form of addiction treatment is at the front lines of that issue. The statistics showing the relationship of housing status and health find that when a high utilizer of health care services gains supportive housing, average hospital costs are 86% of prior costs (see Crisis Indicator: Triage Tool for Identifying Homeless Adults in Crisis).
For more on housing and addiction services, this month we talked to Traci Nesmith, Regional Director at Resources for Human Development (RHD). RHD is a national human services non-profit founded in 1970 that specializes in creating innovative, quality services that support people in trauma-informed, person-centered programs across the country. Additionally, RHD provides outpatient and residential treatment for people with opioid addictions and other substance use disorders, including the first residential treatment program for transgender individuals in the country. RHD also provides field-based behavioral health treatment and supportive living programs for hundreds of adults and children across the country, as well as fully integrated federally qualified health centers serving 20,000 patients throughout Philadelphia.
RHD provides a broad array of services to support people of all abilities in more than 160 programs including several substance use treatment programs. The organization employs 5,500 people and has annual revenues of $260+ million, delivering essential services to more than 50,000 adults and children each year. Ms. Nesmith spoke specifically about the RHD Camden Supportive Housing and Montgomery County Recovery Clinic (MCRC) programs. Camden Supportive Housing is part of the MATI (Medication Assistance Treatment Initiative) compiled by the New Jersey Department of Human Services Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services. Opening in the 1970’s, MCRC’s out-patient program has been long- standing supporters of Medication Assisted Treatment, offering Methadone and Vivitrol. In 2016, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf and the Department of Human Services officially named MCRC a “Center of Excellence”.
RHD founded Camden Supportive Housing in 2008, the program utilizes the Intensive Supportive Housing team to provide comprehensive, recovery-oriented case management services to individuals who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. Camden Supportive Housing provides case management services while embodying the values of RHD and embracing the tenets of Harm Reduction and Housing First (see RHD Camden Supportive Housing).
Ms. Nesmith explained RHD provides services to specialty populations. At MCRC and Camden Supportive Housing, 90% of the consumers have stopped using opiates, and are involved in medication-assisted treatment (MAT).
The program team at Camden Supportive Housing, provides services in the home of participants that ensure their long-term tenancy and help them to identify and access resources in the community that will help them achieve their long-term recovery and wellness goals as well as their ultimate goal of independence.
The team is comprised of a Director, Team Lead, Office Manager, Senior Case Manager, Case Manager, Peer Support Specialist and Direct Support Professional.
RHD is paid a daily rate for each consumer in the MCRC program. RHD also has a mixed payer in various counties via Medicaid, and a single county authority for the under- or uninsured.
Future Of Addiction Treatment
The integration of treatment with social services, such housing, is yet another move to treating the “whole person” in health and human services. With this in mind, Ms. Nesmith explained her vision of the future, and RHD’s place in it. With this in mind, Ms. Nesmith shared ideas of the future, and RHD’s place in it.
Our programs will continue to provide a wholistic, trauma informed, person centered approach to treatment with a focus on housing. An increase in the use of technology and on-going MAT in conjunction with housing and supports are critical in this opioid epidemic. Safe Injection Sites and embedding multiple levels of care, will allow for a more seamless transition in meeting the person’s needs and providing a comprehensive treatment experience. There is also great value in holistic approaches to treatment, including mindfulness, movement and art therapies. In addition, mobile services that create more access to treatment along with recognizing people need a safe place to live to fully commit to MAT and recovery.
|Resources for Human Development is a national human services nonprofit with the broadest possible service mission, and specializes in creating innovative, quality services that support people of all abilities wherever the need exists.
Year Founded: In 1970, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania enacted and funded its first comprehensive Mental Health/Mental Retardation Act. Bertram Wolfson, RHD Board Chairperson, was asked to form a citizen’s committee to administer a program in Lower Merion Township of Montgomery County – with an initial grant of just $50,000. The committee incorporated Resources for Human Development as a non-profit human services organization
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