News / Treating Addiction and Mental Health Disorders During COVID-19

Treating Addiction and Mental Health Disorders During COVID-19

Robb Schuler
 March 24th, 2020

While coronavirus presents some major challenges to treatment providers, the work you are doing is more important than ever.

Treatment centers across the globe fight a daily war against a disease that is all too fatal. CEO’s, administrators, clinicians, medical and nursing staff, and support staff including housekeeping and maintenance personnel all see the pain and suffering of not just the individual but also the families involved. The death rate is also serious regardless of the attention or lack of attention this disease receives.

From 1999 through 2017, the CDC shows more than 702,000 people died from a drug overdose in the U.S. alone. An average of 130 Americans die each day from a drug overdose. We lost more than 70,000 people in 2017 and between March 2018 and February 2019, we lost another 69,029 individuals.

As we all navigate our lives, our work and our personal journeys through the COVID-19 Pandemic, I would encourage you to keep some of these figures in mind. Many treatment centers that you will find on RehabPath’s sites around the world are equipped and prepared to fight addiction. They deal with an enemy that still exists and will continue to exist long after our current crisis, and, in fact, may be exacerbated by these difficult times. They have been called to serve those that suffer and nothing will stop them from their calling.

Increased Number of People Seeking Treatment

While we’re seeing a lower volume of search traffic globally at the moment, we’re starting to see an increase in people seeking help based on the new circumstances they find themselves in. Some have time off during this Global Crisis and they see it as an opening to reach out for help. Here is a recent (anonymized & generalized) example of an inquiry a center in California recently received:

“I am reaching a breaking point and I really really need some time to myself to heal with the help of professionals. Due to coronavirus I have 5+ weeks off of class and would really like to use this time to fully work on myself. Please let me know if you have any availabilities for a 3-4 week stay beginning in the next week or two.”

Based on inquiries and annual cycles we have studied, we believe that many, many more people will be seeking help as an effect of the COVID-19 virus.

An Opportunity for Intervention and Encouragement Toward Recovery

Treatment providers often have an opportunity to save lives through intervention. Sometimes that intervention takes place formally through a Certified Interventionist and oftentimes, intervention takes place through an informal process such as an interaction with the legal system, a family that can’t “help” any longer, an employer that sees a need, and sometimes people just get tired of being sick and tired. 

For example, we always see a spike after the holidays when people gather with their families and less formal interventions take place. 

In essence, COVID-19 is an “intervention” or opportunity for those to get treatment. We  understand that with bars and restaurants closing there most likely will be a greater need for detox services. Isolation also causes many people to have a moment of clarity and hopefully they will reach out for help. Anxiety is prevalent in the world that we live in and has only increased as this virus has spread.

Helping People Connect With Treatment

At RehabPath, we’re grateful and honored that we can help people connect with treatment providers worldwide. It’s wonderful to know firsthand that treatment providers are there to serve those that suffer from alcoholism, drug addiction, anxiety and other mental health issues, regardless of what is going on in the world. We understand that this disease we fight daily is a disease of isolation and treatment providers understand that better than anyone. They provide a strength-based community to serve those that suffer from addiction. These are times people who are struggling need us helpers even more.

To each one of our clients and treatment providers on our sites, we want to say Thank You for showing up through all that goes on in this world; you make a difference every day. Be prepared for the spike you may see, and most importantly—Stay Healthy and Stay Well!

About Robb

Robb leads RehabPath’s business development efforts and specifically focuses on helping treatment centers reach people more effectively. Before joining RehabPath, he has held various roles with addiction treatment providers, and considers this field his calling. Of most relevance to many of our clients, he spent approximately 4 years as the Director of Operations and Business Development with Duffys Napa Valley Rehab in Calistoga, California. Robb is also one of the most genuine and caring people you could meet!

RehabPath provides independent resources with no ties or affiliations with treatment companies or particular methods. We have one primary goal: to help families and individuals worldwide find hope and help from addiction.

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