AKRON, OHIO - In a significant move to combat the drug-addiction crisis, Summit County Council has awarded $500,000 to Cleveland Clinic Akron General's Recovery's in Reach program. This program has been crucial in providing immediate help to individuals suffering from Substance Use Disorder (SUD) through the hospital's Emergency Departments.
The successful Recovery’s in Reach program was launched in April 2022 and was initially backed by a $1 million grant from the Summit County Opiate Abatement Advisory Council. Over the past year and a half, the program has identified and reached out to 1,513 patients grappling with SUD. Recovery Coordinators have successfully referred or placed 645 of these patients into outpatient or inpatient recovery centers.
Emergency patients who are identified as needing help with SUD are paired with a Peer Recovery Coach from Catholic Charities, who is physically present on-site. In addition, patients also receive care from a registered nurse specializing in behavioral health and addiction services. This ensures that they receive comprehensive, long-term supportive care tailored to their specific needs.
The Recovery’s in Reach program extends its helping hand to all patients affected by SUD, including vulnerable groups such as the homeless and those with mental illnesses. Patients seen in Akron General’s PATH Center, which caters to victims of sexual assault, domestic abuse, human trafficking, elder abuse, and neglect, as well as pregnant women, are also referred to the program when necessary.
Jonathan Sanchez, MBA, BSN, RN, the Lead Program Coordinator, who also serves as the nurse manager of Akron General’s main campus emergency department, expressed gratitude for the additional funding. “The opiate crisis in Summit County has crippled the health and well-being of our community for many years,” he said. “Recovery’s in Reach has already helped so many people in this community and we are very appreciative of the Summit County Council providing additional funding that enables us to continue this work into the future.”
With this new funding, the Recovery’s in Reach program is set to continue its vital work, offering hope and a lifeline to those battling addiction. Through compassion, expertise, and community support, Cleveland Clinic Akron General is making recovery more than just a possibility—it's within reach.