Blog: News & Views from the Field

Knowledge can be empowering. Whether you are seeking recovery for yourself or someone else, we hope you find our blog topics helpful. Check back often or subscribe today.

Meet our New MADOC Medical Director: Q&A with Sharif Nankoe

Dr. Sharif Nankoe has been appointed as Medical Director for Spectrum Health Systems’ new statewide correctional program with the Massachusetts Department of Corrections (MADOC), serving inmates with opioid use disorders (OUD). Get to know Dr. Nankoe and his views on correctional addiction treatment!

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Q&A with Sanjay Grant, MA-LMHC and Program Director at Spectrum Health Systems

Our employees are what make us a top-notch provider of addiction treatment. They’re our boots on the ground, the problem solvers, and the go-to resources for our clients seeking help for addiction.

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Why We Administered COVID-19 Vaccines to Local Partner Organizations in Need

It’s been a long and difficult road - COVID-19 hit Massachusetts in February 2020. By mid-March, businesses were shutting down and people were hunkering down at home. At Spectrum Health Systems and the New England Recovery Center, we sprang into action and created a specialized COVID-19 unit designed to treat people suffering from drug and alcohol use disorders as well as COVID-19. Through the ups and downs in the Commonwealth, Spectrum and NERC have held steadfast in our mission to help those suffering from substance use disorders even during a global pandemic.

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The Importance of Language in Reducing the Stigma Often Associated with Substance Use Disorders

Words matter, especially when we as a society continue to fight the stigma against those struggling with addiction. As we learn more every day about drug and alcohol addiction disorders, we also have to contend with the fact that helpful and educational terms change over time. Sometimes it can be hard to keep up with, but it’s important for allies to those in recovery to stay up-to-date on the do’s and don’ts of addiction-related language. Let’s break down which words are helpful and others that may hurt people.

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3 Tips for Staying Sober this Holiday Season

This has been a particularly stressful holiday season for many, and perhaps a lonely one as well. In previous blogs, we’ve shared advice about how to navigate large family gatherings while in recovery. Many of us will be forgoing those big gatherings this year in order to stay safe, introducing a new challenge: how to keep your spirits up and stay sober while isolating from loved ones?

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Regis College Panel: Addiction Treatment – Pandemic Emergency Response and Beyond

The impact of COVID-19 has been particularly felt by people who struggle with addiction. For those of us who work in the field of addiction treatment, most of this year has been devoted to responding to the pandemic and strengthening our organizations so that we are prepared for future emergencies.

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Spectrum’s Guardian Angel: Shana Adams and Masks Made with Love

At Spectrum Health Systems, we’re lucky to have an external network of dedicated individuals who donate their time and effort to help us with our mission. One of those incredible individuals is Shana Adams, founder of Masks Made With Love/MetroWest MA.

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2020 Recap: Expanding Addiction Treatment in New England

As another year draws to a close, we can’t help but reflect on just how different 2020 has been. It has created many challenges for addiction treatment providers, and we’re proud of the way our centers and employees were able to meet them.

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Three Things Dax Shepard is Teaching the World About Relapse

Recently, actor Dax Shepard shared a big secret with the world: he had relapsed after sixteen years of sobriety. On his podcast, Armchair Expert, he explained that he had been keeping an “enormous secret,” that he had been prescribed painkillers after a motorcycle accident and ultimately started misusing them. What started out as a prescription for OxyContin turned into a relapse.

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Spectrum’s COVID-19 Unit Reopens to Meet Second Wave

At the outset of this pandemic, we established a dedicated COVID-19 unit to treat people who had tested positive for the virus, but also needed medical detoxification and clinical stabilization from addiction. Over the summer, the unit enjoyed a brief respite as the number of clients with COVID-19 dwindled down. Now, cases are on the rise again in Massachusetts and our specialized unit is back in action at full capacity to respond to both addiction and the pandemic.

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