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As the drug and alcohol crisis continues to impact the South Jersey area, Inspira Health has opened a new inpatient Medical Acute Detoxification and Addiction Treatment unit in Bridgeton.
Dave Moore, executive director of Behavioral Health Services at Inspira Health, explained that the unit opened on June 3rd and features private and semi-private rooms. It is the first hospital-based program of its kind south of Princeton.
"It's a 20-be medical acute detox unit," Moore said. "Five beds opened on June 3rd, then we'll go to 10 beds, and within 60 days, we'll be at the full 20 beds. Opening in stages is the right way to do this. It's a beautiful, state-of-the-art unit. It's exciting that its's located in Bridgeton, which is surrounded by Behavioral Health and wellness services, so we can take a holistic approach to substance issues."
Moore added that having the unit so close to an emergency room will be beneficial in helping individuals whose addiction have reached a critical juncture.
"As they arrive, they're hitting rock bottom, so they're motivated to make changes," he said. "We can't wait until we get 20 beds because we know we're going to save a lot of lives. We're catching people at the exact moment they are in need of help."
Medically supervised detox can ensure a patient's safety and comfort during the difficult but necessary withdrawal stage of treatment. Moore explained that this is a voluntary unit for individuals who truly want to be there to address their reliance on drugs and/or alcohol abuse issues.
Detoxification services are individualized to each client's needs. Susan Vanatta, nurse manager, explained that the nurses on the unit have strong, addiction-focused backgrounds. Additionally, the unit offers recovery coaches who are crucial to the process.
Moore explained that the average length of stay might be four to five days but could extend beyond that for patients with multiple medical issues. The focus is on getting patients an appropriate level of medication-assisted therapy, he said.
"When detox is completed, the individual steps down to residential rehab or the partial hospital program, depending on the level of treatment he or she needs at that point," Moore said. "Our goal is to stabilize their medical condition to the point where they can be transferred to a non-medical or outpatient program. Getting them into long-term outpatient treatment will sustain them on their trip down the road to recovery."