One of the least mentioned effects of the coronavirus pandemic is the impact it is having on people in recovery. Fear or exposure to COVID-19, the need for social distancing and regulations around safe interactions have made it difficult for those in outpatient programs or who attend recovery meetings to access the support they need to remain sober. Despite the difficulties we are currently facing, it is important that we all continue to make addiction recovery our top priority and seek out alternatives that will help prevent relapse.
How Outpatient Treatments Have Been Impacted
In outpatient treatment, you continue to live at home, but visit a treatment facility on a set schedule to receive counseling, medication management consultation, or other modes of treatment. Outpatient treatment is a viable option if you want to limit contact with others. Treatment centers are expected to have processes in place to protect patients and staff from COVID-19 exposure while allowing access for addiction recovery services and maintaining a therapeutic environment. Staff will consider the needs of patients in regards to their addiction treatment, health needs in relation to coronavirus, and the likelihood of spreading the virus to others.
Knowing a Treatment Facility is Safe
Before you walk into a treatment facility, it is important to be screened for COVID-19 via phone. Expect screeners to ask if you are experiencing symptoms such as cough, fever, or shortness of breath and if you have been in the presence of anyone who may have COVID-19. Cleaning practices should be in place at all treatment facilities with hand sanitizer readily available for use. Staff and clients should be required to wear masks and other protective gear. Furniture should be arranged so that individuals can easily maintain a distance of six feet apart.
If you are positive for COVID-19 or may have been exposed to the virus, it is best to seek out facilities that offer telehealth services.
Staying Safe in Inpatient Treatment
Inpatient treatment centers need to go through the same protocols as outpatient centers with patients and staff being regularly screened for the virus and appropriate sanitizing and social distancing practices in place. Patients who test positive for COVID-19 should be quarantined until they have fully recovered. It is highly likely that there will be a surge in demand for addiction treatment centers to prevent more people from relapsing. If you are struggling with addiction and know you need help, do not let this pandemic stop you from seeking the support you need.
The COVID-19 pandemic has created special challenges for those struggling with addiction. Alta Loma Transitional Living believes you shouldn’t have to choose between overcoming your recovery and remaining safe from coronavirus. Located just north of Austin in Georgetown, Texas, Alta Loma uses an integrative and holistic approach to treat addiction and mental health issues. Our all-male program helps men with co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders achieve the emotional and psychological stability that will allow them to focus on sustainable, long-term recovery. Alta Loma’s staff of knowledgeable, compassionate professionals understand addiction in all forms. They will work with you to create an ideal care plan to heal your mind, body, and spirit, so that you look forward to a lifetime of sobriety and wellness. To speak to someone about how you can safely begin your journey to recovery, please call us Alta Loma at (866) 457-3843.