CODAC Behavioral Healthcare – An Overview

Founded in 1971, CODAC Behavioral Healthcare is Rhode Island’s oldest and largest non-profit provider of outpatient Opioid Use Disorder (OUD) treatment and recovery services. With seven community-based locations, as well as programming at the Rhode Island Department of Corrections (DOC), CODAC is well-positioned to deliver services wherever they are needed across the state. For more than 45 years, CODAC has worked with individuals, families and communities to provide comprehensive outpatient and community-based resources to those living and struggling with the challenges of substance use disorder, behavioral healthcare issues, and other addictive or abusive behaviors. CODAC programs are designed to promote recovery and to help participants acquire and utilize the skills necessary to lead healthy and fulfilling lives.

CODAC has been a leader in adopting and creating programming which reflects emergent needs in opioid treatment recovery, and integrates evidence-based and best practice standards into service delivery. As part of our commitment to providing whole person care, CODAC has implemented onsite psychiatric and mental health services, trauma-informed care, specialized counseling groups for specific patient populations (e.g., pregnant/postpartum women, individuals involved with the criminal justice system, and patients coping with PTSD). Our wellness programs include acupuncture, nutrition, and expressive arts, tobacco cessation,and problem gambling programs.

In 2013, CODAC became the first certified Opioid Treatment Program (OTP) in the United States to attain Health Home status. Health Homes are Medicaid supported programs that provide expanded services to patients, including linkages to community healthcare providers, housing opportunities, education and employment resources, and other wraparound services.

In 2016, all CODAC sites were certified as the first Centers of Excellence (COEs) for opioid treatment in Rhode Island. The COE designation is awarded to agencies that meet or exceed standards established by the Governor’s Overdose Prevention and Intervention Task Force, the Department of Behavioral Health, Developmental Disabilities and Hospitals (BHDDH), and the RI Department of Health. COEs must also be able to provide at least two of the three FDA approved medications for the treatment of opioid use disorder: methadone, buprenorphine (SuboxoneTM, SubutexTM), oral naltrexone and depot naltrexone (VivitrolTM). CODAC is the only provider agency in RI authorized to offer all three of these medications, which are available at all six of our seven OTP programs (our newest site at Eleanor Slater offers buprenorphine and depot/oral naltrexone).

What a referring physician can expect from CODAC’s COEs:

  • Assessment of patients within 24 hours of referral
  • Initiation of medication assisted treatment for patients, if indicated, within 48 hours of referral
  • 24/7 access to CODAC’s on-call medical referral hotline for Emergency Department doctors
  • For patients who have been prescribed a buprenorphine product, CODAC will stabilize the patient on their medication and refer back to the prescribing practice
  • Regular status reports to referring physicians in a manner that best suits the needs of the practice
  • CODAC assumption of all responsibility for third-party identification
  • Ongoing patient access to toxicology, behavioral health, and case management services, as indicated
  • Referrals to office-based treatment providers (including CODAC) for patients stabilized on their medication, as appropriate
  • ASAM level physicians, available during work hours, to provide consultation.

CODAC’s programming is sensitive to shifting trends in the community.   In response to the opioid addiction and overdose crisis, we have introduced Naloxone overdose prevention education and direct access to Narcan kits for patients, families and the community. A recently launched fentanyl education program has provided important resources not only within the opioid treatment community, but has helped inform the larger community about this developing and devastating trend.

All CODAC clinicians receive specialized training in areas such as nutrition and addiction, trauma and PTSD, methadone and pregnancy, developmental disabilities, enabling CODAC to provide targeted support for patients with specific needs. In addition to individual counseling, CODAC offers an array of group counseling options, including life skills; relapse prevention; early recovery; substance use disorder awareness; conflict resolution; wellness; and overdose prevention.

CODAC has always viewed addiction as a family disease, affecting everyone who cares about or is closely involved with an individual experiencing substance use disorder. CODAC further believes that the support of family and friends is critical for successful long-term recovery—yet loved ones are often uncertain about how to provide that support. CODAC offers education and support programs for families and close friends, helping them understand the process of recovery from opioid addiction and offering information on ways they can help. These resources are available throughout the treatment/recovery continuum, for as long as patients and their families need them. CODAC’s approach to treatment and recovery emphasizes provision of care that acknowledges “whole person” health and wellness. This often means the coordination of care with patients’ primary care or specialty providers. CODAC’s administrative, medical and clinical staff, as well as our Health Home teams, communicate directly with these providers, or make referrals for treatment to address specific health needs that have not yet been addressed.

Collectively, CODAC’s staff of over 160 clinical, medical and administrative professionals serve more than 2600 patients at any given point in time, using Motivational Interviewing (MI) and other best practice disciplines to provide the most current, competent and compassionate care and working as partners in achieving goals in treatment and recovery. CODAC services include:

  • Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) for opioid use disorder, utilizing all three FDA approved medications
  • Expedited access to care, with initiation of the assessment/treatment process within 24 hours of first contact
  • Psychiatric services, offering both on-site psychological and mental health evaluation and treatment, as well as assessment for outside referral
  • Counseling and education for partners and family members affected by the substance use of someone they love
  • Pain management programs and alternative approaches to treating pain
  • Overdose prevention education and access to Naloxone
  • Peer recovery support programs, including Peer Support Specialist training opportunities for individuals already in recovery
  • Tobacco cessation treatment and training services provided by ATTUD-certified, master level Tobacco Treatment Specialists
  • Programs for gambling disorder
  • Rapid Hepatitis C testing, with case management, treatment, and/or referral services
  • Off-site services in nursing homes and in residential care facilities
  • Special services for pregnant women and new mothers
  • Counseling for DUI and other criminal justice referrals, including: Probation and Parole; Drug Court, Juvenile and Family Court referrals
  • Evaluations and treatment required for Department of Children, Youth, and Families (DCYF-involved families)
  • Treatment, reentry services, and recovery support for Department of Corrections referrals
  • Assessment, medication assisted treatment—utilizing all three FDA approved medications for the treatment of opioid addiction—and detoxification services for incarcerated individuals at the ACI
  • Access to enhanced care utilizing wellness-based or promising models: acupuncture, therapeutic journaling, yoga

CODAC has been awarded ongoing national accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF), with specialized accreditations for MAT, General Outpatient, Intensive Outpatient, Adolescent and Family services, and Department of Justice referrals. CODAC is proud to have received special commendations from CARF for maintaining the highest standards of care and for national leadership in tobacco cessation.   CODAC is DEA registered, BHDDH licensed, RI and Department of Health Board of Pharmacy licensed.  CODAC’s Medical Director holds ASAM Diplomate status and CODAC is an active participant in the Providers’ Clinical Support System for Opioid Therapy’s Colleague and Clinical Support Programs. This consultation program has proven to work successfully for CODAC and participants and can be enhanced or adapted to meet individual provider needs.  CODAC’s medical, clinical and counseling staff are available to provide training, education and consultation to other providers in the community.

A long history of strong community partnerships, provider collaborations, and agency affiliations has allowed CODAC to achieve continuity in communications and the establishment of a seamless support system of wraparound services for our patients. We work closely with state and federal institutions to coordinate opioid treatment policy. CODAC is honored to have been a key consultant on the US Senate’s Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act, and the only provider invited to testify on addiction and treatment before the Senate Judiciary committee.   Our Health Home and COE initiatives depend on developing and maintaining working relationships with community-based practitioners for bi-directional referral and coordinated transition of care.

CODAC accepts Medicaid and Ritecare, as well as most forms of commercial insurance including: United Healthcare, Neighborhood Health Plans, Tufts and Blue Cross.

Help where and when it’s needed:

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