Listen to Rosecrance experts talk about heroin in the suburbs

On Sunday, April 14, Pat Spangler and Chris Yadron of Rosecrance talked about “The Suburban Heroin Epidemic”  with Susan Wieneck on “MIX Matters,” a public affairs show that airs on Chicago’s 101.9 FM the MIX. .

Click on this link, then click on the top entry (Podcast 4/15/13) on the WTMX page. A new window will open on your browser, and the interview will play. You can also download the file and listen to it later.

Wisconsin State Journal reports on Rosecrance's TMS therapy

Gayle Laszewski, Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation coordinator at Connections Counseling in Madison, demonstrates a TMS machine on Dr. Thomas Wright, chief medical officer for Rosecrance Health Network.

A story in the Wisconsin State Journal spotlights the arrival on Monday, Jan 7, of transcranial magnetic stimulation (or TMS) therapy in Madison, courtesy of a joint venture by Rosecrance and Connections Counseling.

A new brain stimulation therapy for depression is coming to Madison this  week. Transcranial magnetic stimulation, or TMS, uses a magnetic coil positioned on  the head to activate targeted brain cells…. Connections Counseling will open the TMS Center of Madison on Monday at its  clinic on Madison’s West Side through a joint venture with Rosecrance Health  Network of Rockford, Ill.”

Read the whole story here.

Rosecrance School makes education a vital part of substance abuse treatment

Note: This article appears in the Winter 2013 edition of Reach. To download a PDF version of the story, click here.

Rosecrance School

Cindy Kelly, Donna Swanstrom (secretary), Matthew Fields, Sharon Burns, Barb Dean (back row), Jodi Miller and Meghan Garnhart (front) make up the staff at the Rosecrance School.

They’re not just students; they’re also clients at Rosecrance’s Griffin Williamson Campus, a Rockford treatment facility for young people dealing with substance abuse. And, as part of their treatment, they attend school four hours each day.

“Treatment comes first, but education is a close second,” says Jason Gorham, Administrator of Residential Services at the Rosecrance Griffin Williamson Campus. “Students need to know how to cope in a school environment. If they don’t know how to adapt, they will go back to old habits.”

Students at the Griffin Williamson Campus follow the Rockford School District calendar, and the district assigns six certified teachers to the school.  Two to three hours daily are spent on core academics, the rest on art, gym or life skills. Books come from the students’ home districts; Rosecrance provides the space, furniture and equipment. Each class has a maximum of 14 students, and each student brings unique challenges. They get assignments, they get homework, and some of them get diplomas.
They all have one thing in common:  The biggest lessons they learn often have little to do with reading, writing and arithmetic.

Cindy Kelly is the lead teacher at Rosecrance, where she’s taught for more than 24 years. She supervises the teachers at Griffin Williamson and says her work with the students combines education and encouragement.

“All I try to do is plant the seed and the desire within each kid,” Kelly says. “Let them know they are important and they are worthwhile no matter what they have done in the past. ‘You made bad choices, but you aren’t a bad kid. You have to change your choices.’ Hopefully, here at Rosecrance, they will learn how.”

She has to constantly adapt to what the students need. Having a flexible style  and positive outlook are critical.

“Everything changes from minute to minute,” Kelly says. “It’s never black and white. It can’t be.”

Cindy Kelly

Cindy Kelly gets ready for the day in her classroom at the Rosecrance School. Each of the seven classrooms offers a view of the Healing Garden.

Teachers at the Griffin Williamson campus work with educators and counselors in the students’ home schools to coordinate lessons, and regular progress reports are provided.

Students arrive on campus with a wide range of educational needs. Some are in Advanced Placement classes, and others are not attending school at all. When necessary, tutors are brought in, and sometimes, the home school has to put in extra time and effort.  That goes for the students, too: Most students devote four hours to school, but those with heavy course loads spend more time on their work.

Even teens who aren’t enrolled in school or have been expelled take part in school activities at Rosecrance. Some districts provide programs for students to continue their education, and the teens can also take a prep course for the GED exam.

The teachers at Rosecrance Griffin Williamson instruct students in all subjects, sometimes covering several topics and grade levels in a single class. And that’s not all they do.

“We probably, at some point, play all roles,” Kelly says. “Sometimes (the students) need to be told they are OK. Sometimes we need to be the teacher and be in their faces and strong with education. Other times, they need a friend to sit there and let them vent.”

Rules are rules at Rosecrance – students can’t skip classes, and they can’t be tardy – but, Kelly says discipline isn’t a problem.  That’s because their achievements in this school represent the most success many students have had in a long time.

“Usually they come in very resistant, not wanting to be here,” Kelly says, “but by the time they leave, the tears are coming, and they don’t want to leave. You get the call or the card saying ‘thank you,’ or you receive a graduation announcement: ‘I did it. I’m going to graduate.’

“That’s your payoff. The success stories.”

About lead teacher Cindy Kelly

  • Experience: 24 years teaching. Has taught at Guilford High School, Alternative High School and Rosecrance
  • Degrees: Bachelor of Science, Masters in Education, degree in Special Education Behavior and Emotional Disorders

About the school

  • Six certified teachers, with a 1:14 teacher-student ratio
  • Four-hour school day five days a week, with two to three academic hours and rest of the time devoted to life skills, art and fitness.
  • Seven classrooms, including an art room and a life skills lab. Experiential therapy includes art, horticulture, music, fitness and life skills.

Written by Alexi Bown and Will Pfeifer

Rosecrance part of planned school-based health clinic


Mary Ann Abate

Mary Ann Abate

Rosecrance VP for Mental Health Services Mary Ann Abate joined officials from the Rockford School District and Crusader Community Health Thursday in announcing the receipt of a federal grant to offer school-based services for students needing medical, behavioral health, vision and dental care.“Rosecrance is extremely excited to collaborate with District 205 and Crusader to offer care our children so desperately need,” Abate said. “Now, more than ever, I believe we are coming to understand how important it is for children and adults alike to have access to quality behavioral health care when they need services.”

Rosecrance will place a licensed social worker at the clinic to help students who need help with substance abuse and mental health issues. Referrals will be made to the Rosecrance services for mental health issues and substance abuse.

Gordon Eggers, Crusader CEO, said at a press conference at school district offices Thursday afternoon that Crusader “would not want to do this without Rosecrance and a behavioral health aspect.”

School Supt. Robert Willis hailed Crusader, Rosecrance SwedishAmerican Health System and Dr. William Hillman of the Primary Eye Care Center of Rockford as “solid community partners with a history of service.”

Rockford Public Schools has received a $500,000 federal grant that will allow the district to move forward with a school-based health center, which will provide services to more than 3,000 students.

The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services awarded more than $80 million to 197 school-based health centers across the country.

“The need for these services is well documented and will enable children with acute or chronic illnesses to attend school as well as help improve their overall health and wellness through health screenings, health promotion and disease prevention,” Eggers said.

The federal grant will cover half of the center’s start-up costs, and is made possible under the Affordable Care Act. The district also received a $50,000 grant from the state. The center is expected to operate five days a week, year-round. District officials anticipate the center will open this summer, in time to provide school physicals and sports physicals for the 2013-14 school year.


Rosecrance veterans exhibit work in Crystal Lake art show

Veterans in the Rosecrance substance abuse program were among the artists whose work was exhibited in the Community Partners-Mental Health Awareness for All Annual Art Exhibit at the Lakeside Legacy Foundation’s Sage Gallery Arts Park in Crystal Lake, Illinois.

Here’s the Rosecrance Artists’ Statement: “Rosecrance provides help, hope and recovery to children, youth, adults and families.  Making art while in treatment allows clients to utilize art as a coping skill to decrease stress, promote relaxation, and release their emotions in a safe and therapeutic environment.  It often times challenges their preconceived thoughts that they were “bad at art” and allows them to experience a sense of accomplishment and that it can feel good to make art.”

And here are some comments from the artists:

“Making art is my brain and my emotions talking.  It’s all of me getting poured out onto a project, if feels really good…And I feel like I’m good at something.”

“Art helped me a lot and helps me focus; while I’m painting I don’t even think about doing drugs.”

“It’s awesome and therapeutic; I’m able to be more relaxed and can concentrate on finishing a task.”

“I have been able to give my kids artwork that I made, it makes me feel good.  They ask me to make them more things.”

A story in the Nov. 2 edition of the Northwest Herald described the show:

“Works range from group projects submitted by veterans in the Rosecrance substance abuse program to persons receiving services through Turning Point and Family Alliance, individual work by persons connected with McHenry County’s National Alliance for Mental Health, the Social Connections Group, Centegra Health System, Thresholds, NISRA, Options and Advocacy, Jail Brakers and Garden Quarter.”

Michael Oldenburg, a unit technician at Rosecrance’s Harrison Campus, stands by artwork he created that is part of the Community Partners-Mental Health Awareness for All Annual Art Exhibit in Crystal Lake.

The Community Partners-Mental Health Awareness for All Annual Art Exhibit is at. the Lakeside Legacy Foundation’s Sage Gallery Arts Park, at Historic Dole Mansion, 401 County Club Road, Crystal Lake, Illinois.

Register Star editorial talks about need for mental illness awareness

The editorial in the Thursday, Oct. 11, edition of the Rockford Register Star is titled “Our View: Mental Illness ‘does not discriminate’,” and keys off recent events in the news — the closing of Singer Mental Health Center, Jesse Jackson Jr.’s bipolar diagnosis — to stress that the focus on mental illness must go beyond the headlines because it can affect anyone at all. This is Mental Illness Awareness Week, but the awareness must continue all year long.

The editorial also mention’s Rosecrance’s Triage Center, which is due to open this month at the Rosecrance Ware Center:

“The regional triage center that Rosecrance Health Network officials intend to open in a few weeks is a critical piece for people who have immediate psychiatric needs.”

Read the entire editorial here.

FDA warns consumers about counterfeit version of Adderall

Tablets purchased on the Internet contain wrong active ingredients

Read this new release on The Food and Drug Administration’s website.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is warning consumers and health care professionals about a counterfeit version of Teva Pharmaceutical Industries’ Adderall 30 milligram tablets that is being purchased on the Internet. Adderall, which is approved to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorders (ADHD) and narcolepsy, is a prescription drug classified as a controlled substance – a class of drugs for which special controls are required for dispensing by pharmacists.

FDA’s preliminary laboratory tests revealed that the counterfeit version of Teva’s Adderall 30 mg tablets contained the wrong active ingredients. Adderall contains four active ingredients – dextroamphetamine saccharate, amphetamine aspartate, dextroamphetamine sulfate, and amphetamine sulfate. Instead of these active ingredients, the counterfeit product contained tramadol and acetaminophen, which are ingredients in medicines used to treat acute pain.

Currently on the FDA’s drug shortage list, Adderall is in short supply due to active pharmaceutical ingredient supply issues. Teva continues to release product as it becomes available. Consumers should be extra cautious when buying their medicines from online sources. Rogue websites and distributors may especially target medicines in short supply for counterfeiting.

The counterfeit Adderall tablets are round, white and do not have any type of markings, such as letters or numbers. Any product that resembles the tablets or the packaging in the photos below and claims to be Teva’s Adderall 30 mg tablets should be considered counterfeit. The counterfeit versions of Adderall should be considered as unsafe, ineffective and potentially harmful.

Authentic Adderall 30 mg tablets produced by Teva are round, orange/peach, and scored tablets with “dp” embossed on one side and “30” on the other side of the tablet. Teva’s Adderall 30 mg tablets are packaged only in a 100-count bottle with the National Drug Code (NDC) 0555-0768-02 listed.

In the news: Youth recovery court starts in Winnebago County

Judge Janet Holmgren, presiding judge of the Juvenile and Specialty Courts Division of the 17th Judicial Circuit Court, smiles while distributing state certificates for Rosecrance’s crisis intervention training (C.I.T.). in February. Judge Holmgren presides over a special youth recovery court for juvenile offenders with mental heath or substance abuse issues.

WREX-13 published an article over the weekend about a Rosecrance-affiliated recovery court for juvenile offenders with mental health or substance abuse issues.

The court system is designed to provide an alternative to jail and is presided by Judge Janet Holmgren, presiding judge of the Juvenile and Specialty Courts Division of the 17th Judicial Circuit Court.

From the WREX-13 article:

Experts know when some people commit crimes, the behavior can be out of those people’s control. Maybe substance abuse or mental illness are a problem.

It’s called Youth Recovery Court, a partnership with Rockford’s Rosecrance. Five young adults are eligible for the program now. There’s room for nearly 40. The idea began to take shape in 2011 when the county won a 250 thousand dollar federal grant. Supporters hope this meets a need for troubled kids in the community.

Youth have to have mental or substance abuse problems and non violent offenses to get into the program. Rosecrance staff will test potential participants to see if they’re good candidates for treatment.

Read the complete article on here.

Orland Township officials pool resources for substance abuse recovery

Today on the Tinley Park Patch is an article about officials in Orland Township pooling their substance abuse prevention resources in the wake of recent heroin-related incidents.

From the article:

In March, area law enforcement, mental health, school and government officials met to pool resources in the wake of a noted rise in heroin-related arrests and deaths. They determined that although a great deal of varied treatments, counseling and programs are available in the area, people who need help aren’t connecting with those treatments.

So on May 2, a Community Link Symposium will be held at Carl Sandburg High School to introduce people to local drug and alcohol support services.

Orland Township is inviting a wide range of educators, mental health practitioners, law enforcement officials and community groups to gather next week to help link drug addicts to the help they need.

Read the complete article on Patch here.

TMS therapy featured on Dr. Oz

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS), the first and only non-invasive treatment for depression approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), was featured Wednesday, March 14, on the Dr. Oz program.

TMS is a non-medicinal treatment for major depressive disorder. It is managed by board-certified physicians and features no systemic side effects, such as weight gain or sexual problems. TMS was approved for use by the FDA in Oct. 2008.

“TMS is an exciting addition to Rosecrance’s armamentarium in our battle against depression,” said Dr. Raymond Garcia, M.D., medical director at the Rosecrance Harrison Campus.

The Dr. Oz episode is titled “5 Controversial Solutions to Your Biggest Complaints.” Click here to watch the episode.

From the show’s description:

Dr. Oz has the newest revolutionary therapies for pain, depression and weight loss. The controversial cure for back pain, the controversial weight loss shot – what works? Is your pain all in your head? Or are you missing the warning signs of fibromyalgia? Surprising solutions you haven’t heard!

Aspen Counseling & Consulting is the only provider of TMS in Rockford. Call Aspen at 815-399-9700 for more information or a free consultation.