Monthly Archives: November 2013

Rosecrance sets Dec. 4 open house to celebrate new Belvidere location and program expansion

Ribbon Cutting at 4 p.m. at 915 Alexandra Drive

The community is invited to visit Rosecrance’s newly opened Belvidere office at 915 Alexandra Drive for a Chamber of Commerce Ribbon Cutting and Open House starting at 4 p.m. Dec. 4. The event goes until 6 p.m.

Behavioral health services were moved to the new location in October from a smaller site in the community. The move allows Rosecrance to serve more clients and offer new services, including an intensive outpatient program for adults in treatment for substance use.

The office provides a range of services for individuals with mental health or substance use disorders, including mental health assessments, crisis intervention services, individual counseling, social skills groups and case management.

The Belvidere Chamber of Commerce has scheduled a ribbon cutting at the new location for 4 p.m. Staff will be available at the open house to provide information about Rosecrance programs, and refreshments will be served.

Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Illinois awards grant for Rosecrance-Crusader project

$50,000 award supports integration of primary care and mental health services

The Rosecrance Foundation has received a $50,000 Community Partners Grant from Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois to enhance a two-year-old collaboration with Crusader Community Health that allows low-income clients of each organization to receive services from both agencies at the same site.

The BCBS Community Partners Grants support innovative direct service programs dedicated to advancing health care in under-served communities in Illinois. The Rosecrance-Crusader grant fulfills objectives of the award program by increasing access to healthcare and decreasing fragmentation of services.

Specifically, Rosecrance has counselors “embedded” at Crusader locations to offer behavioral health care alongside primary care delivered by medical staff at Crusader, a federally qualified health center. Likewise, Crusader has embedded primary care professionals at Rosecrance locations to address the physical needs of mental health clients.

The grant was written specifically to address individuals who have four chronic conditions that are prevalent among people with serious mental illness: diabetes, hypertension, obesity and asthma. Individuals who suffer from serious mental illness die, on average, 25 years sooner than the general population because they often don’t get appropriate medical care.

“This kind of bi-directional health care is a critical need in our community. This grant will improve access to care to a group of very vulnerable residents who need both primary care and treatment for mental health and substance use disorders,” said Mary Ann Abate, Rosecrance VP for Community Mental Health. “The close relationship between the team at Rosecrance and the team at Crusader is improving the health and quality of life for clients of both agencies. It truly is a model for the nation.”

Opella Ernest, M.D., Chief Medical Officer for Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois added, “We see great value in supporting this clinical endeavor and the enhanced quality of coordinated care that it delivers.”

About Rosecrance
Rosecrance is a private not-for-profit organization offering behavioral health services for children, adolescents, adults and families. Rosecrance provides services in Rockford, Boone and McHenry counties and at six locations in Chicagoland, as well as in Waukesha County, WI. The organization was founded in 1916.

About Crusader Community Health
Crusader Community Health is a community-based non-profit community health center founded in 1972 to serve the Rock River Valley area with quality primary health care for all people in need. Crusader serves patients at locations in Rockford, Belvidere, Freeport and Loves Park.

About Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois (BCBSIL)
With 7.6 million members, BCBSIL, a Division of Health Care Service Corporation, a Mutual Legal Reserve Company, is the largest health insurance company in Illinois. It is not a publicly-traded company, but is member-owned. Begun in 1936 in Chicago, BCBSIL is committed to promoting the health and wellness of its members and the communities it serves through accessible, cost-effective, quality health care. BCBSIL is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.

By Kailley Lindman

If a teen were suffering from diabetes or another debilitating illness, most parents wouldn’t hesitate to make an appointment with a specialist and take the teen in for a medical evaluation.

In the case of discovering that the child is abusing alcohol or drugs, however, parents often feel overwhelmed and conflicted by fear, guilt, confusion and other emotions. They realize something must be done immediately, but they don’t know where to turn.

While getting proper assessment for a teen affected by substance abuse is uncharted territory for most parents, assessing the teen and recommending appropriate care are well-established protocols among longstanding treatment providers.

“Substance abuse is a serious health issue that is potentially fatal,” said Mary Egan, Rosecrance Director of Outreach. According to the Drug Abuse Warning Network, there were 280,000 emergency room visits in 2011 due to overdoses of alcohol, illegal drugs or pharmaceuticals by youth between the ages of 12 and 17. The Centers for Disease Control reported 38,329 drug overdose deaths in 2010 among adults and adolescents. Taking quick action for substance abuse is “no different” from any other grave illness, Egan said.

Rosecrance provides assessments where parents talk to an intake specialist who records concerns and gathers information about the family and teen.

“Our primary goal during this conversation is to remove any barriers that may stand in the way of the family getting help for the teenager,” Egan said. “The specialist can be very flexible to quickly schedule an assessment for the family.

“We understand the urgency parents feel at this point. They’re frightened by what’s happening, and they want to move as quickly as they are able to get the right kind of help for the child.”

The assessment, step by step

  1. When the family arrives, the parents and the teen are asked to complete necessary paperwork addressing confidentiality and client rights. They sign a form consenting to the evaluation, and the clinician addresses questions or concerns.
  2. The family describes the problem as they see it and in as much detail as possible to help the clinician make the best recommendation.
  3. Parents then are asked to leave the room for the remainder of the assessment, allowing the clinician to speak directly with the teen. Clinicians use a standard comprehensive bio-psychosocial evaluation.
  4. The teen is asked about school, work, relationships, recreational activities and family life, then more about his or her substance use and legal and psychiatric histories. These questions help the clinician understand if substance use is the most pressing issue or if a coexisting condition such as an eating disorder, self-harming behaviors or depression must be addressed as well. If the clinician concludes that the primary diagnosis is not substance use, the family will be referred to a reputable specialist in that area.
  5. Following the interview, the clinician asks the teen to provide a urine sample for analysis.
  6. Before the teen and the family leave the assessment, they have an opportunity to bring up any lingering concerns. The clinician gives the family a quick timeline for receiving a treatment recommendation.

Recommendation for care

The treatment recommendation is based on careful analysis of several factors: the interview, the teen’s apparent motivation to change, drug test results and information gathered from referral sources such as schools and court officials.

“The goal is to match the teen with the lowest, most-appropriate level of care,” Egan said. “For example, if the teen reports only drinking alcohol once and is able to provide a negative drug test sample, he or she might be recommended for early intervention services.

“Similarly, if the teen reports drinking until blacked out several nights a week, he or she might be recommended to seek residential services.”

There also are levels of care in between, according to American Society of Addiction Medicine guidelines:

  • Level 0.5: Early intervention/prevention services
  • Level I: Outpatient services
  • Level II: Intensive outpatient/partial hospitalization services (9-12 hours/week)
  • Level III: Residential inpatient services
  • Level IV: Medically managed intensive inpatient services

After the family receives a recommendation, they may choose to enter a program. Families are not required to follow the recommendation, except if it comes from the courts, but parents are urged to act in their child’s best interest.