The Area Substance Abuse Council (ASAC), in partnership with UCS Healthcare in Des Moines, opened a medication assisted treatment (MAT) clinic at ASAC’s Cedar Rapids main campus, 3601 16th Avenue SW, on Monday, August 26, 2019. The clinic, which has been planned for several months, was slated to open next month; however, the unexpected closure of Cedar Valley Recovery Services’ (CVRS) three MAT clinics, including one in Marion, prompted ASAC and UCS Healthcare to open as soon as possible.
ASAC Interim Executive Director Melissa Walker said the expedited opening has a simple goal.
“Our goal is to ensure the health and safety of community members in need of treatment services by working collaboratively and extending help to as many individuals as we can,” Walker said.
In addition to the new ASAC/UCS Healthcare clinic, specialized MAT services are available locally from Cedar Rapids Comprehensive Treatment Center, Eastern Iowa Health Center and several local prescribers.
“It’s important for patients to know they have options and that there are people ready and willing to help them get through this transition,” Walker said.
Medication assisted treatment–commonly referred to as MAT–combines medication with counseling and behavioral therapies to treat substance use disorders and can help patients start and maintain a life of recovery. MAT medications minimize opioid or alcohol withdrawal symptoms and reduce cravings so patients can focus on recovery. As with any medical treatment, MAT must be closely supervised by a medical provider and any dosage changes carefully monitored.
“Statistics show that patients in MAT have the highest rate of recovery from opioid use disorder versus other treatments,” said Jen Pearson, chief executive officer at UCS Healthcare. “Patients work with their integrated care team to not only address their physical symptoms of withdrawal, but they are also addressing their behavioral health symptoms—trauma, mental illness, addiction, abuse, anger or other issues—through therapy. UCS Healthcare has successfully provided MAT for more than 20 years and we’re proud to partner with ASAC and other opioid treatment providers to bring this treatment to more Iowans.”
Patients whose treatment is abruptly ended are at higher risk of a recurrence of their substance use disorder and are also at higher risk of overdose.
Visit www.asac.us/treatment/mat_grant for more details on the ASAC/UCS Healthcare MAT clinic, including referral process. Medical providers, patients or loving advocates with questions about MAT are encouraged to contact ASAC for more information.
ASAC/UCS Healthcare MAT Clinic
Location: 3601 16th Avenue SW, Cedar Rapids (Inside West ASAC outpatient office)
Dosing Hours: M-F 7am – noon, Sat 8am – 10am
Physicals: M-F 12:30-3 or by appointment
Clinic phone number: (319) 208-7900
About the Area Substance Abuse Council (ASAC)
ASAC is a community-based nonprofit organization that provides accessible, comprehensive substance use and gambling disorder prevention, treatment and recovery services in five Eastern Iowa counties (Linn, Benton, Jones, Clinton and Jackson). Learn more at www.asac.us.
About UCS Healthcare
UCS Healthcare delivers comprehensive health care services including medical and behavioral health diagnosis education and treatment including therapy, psychiatric services, substance use disorder therapy and medication assisted treatment. UCS Healthcare is based in Des Moines, Iowa, with Medication Assisted Treatment medication units embedded in treatment centers across Iowa. Learn more at www.ucsonline.org.