New training program improves access to 24/7 substance use disorder treatment in California communities hit hardest by the opioid epidemic.
EMERYVILLE, Calif. (November 13, 2019) — Nine additional Vituity emergency departments (EDs) have been selected to participate in the California Bridge Program, bringing the total number of Vituity participants to 14. The California Bridge Program is an accelerated training program for hospital-based providers designed to expand access to 24/7 treatment for substance use disorders.
The new Vituity EDs selected to participate in the California Bridge Program are:
They join the following Vituity EDs already serving as California Bridge sites:
The California Bridge Program is funded by a Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) grant to the California Department of Human Services. Participating EDs receive funding, training, and technical assistance to improve hospital-wide treatment of substance abuse disorders.
The Bridge model recognizes EDs and acute care hospitals as the providers best positioned to identify and treat substance use disorder (SUD). Often, an ED visit is a patient's first opportunity to receive treatment — even when the presenting complaint is unrelated to SUD. Bridge EDs frame SUD as a treatable chronic illness. This crucial cultural shift encourages patients to disclose their opioid use so that treatment can begin.
When patients in opioid withdrawal present to Bridge EDs, providers offer a dose of medication, such as buprenorphine, to ease severe withdrawal symptoms. They then transition the patient to outpatient treatment in the community. Studies show that patients who receive medication-assisted treatment (MAT) for SUD are more likely to remain in care than those who are given referral information alone.
“Vituity is proud to have 14 practices selected for this innovative program,” says Dylan Carney, MD, Vituity’s director of MAT. “Providers are seeing the positive impact of MAT on patients at our emergency departments. Instead of using adjunctive medications alone, which often provide incomplete relief of withdrawal symptoms, they’ve found that after giving buprenorphine, patients have such dramatically positive outcomes that they were ready to be discharged in an hour or two.”
Learn more about what it takes to implement a MAT program in the ED in a white paper authored by Vituity’s Chief Medical Officer, Gregg Miller, MD.
As a physician-led and -owned multispecialty partnership, Vituity has proactively driven positive change in the business and practice of healthcare for nearly 50 years. Our more than 3,500 doctors and clinicians provide a wide range of integrated acute care expertise. Serving over 6.4 million patients annually at 300 practice locations, our footprint continues to rapidly expand across the country as we partner with and support hospitals, health systems, clinics, payers, and employers. Vituity’s acute focus and compassionate care are the driving forces that have placed us at the heart of better care.
Our services span the entire acute care continuum, including emergency medicine, acute psychiatry, acute neurology, hospital medicine, critical care, anesthesiology, acute care surgery, telehealth, post-acute care, and outpatient medicine.
About California Bridge Program
Bridge, a program of the Public Health Institute, is establishing a culture of evidence-based medicine to treat substance use disorders through an accelerated training program for healthcare providers that supports, enhances, and increases access to 24/7 treatment in every community.