PCARE (Project Connections at Re-Entry) BHLI’s PCARE model is unique. We operate a low threshold treatment model within the harm reduction continuum. We are uniquely positioned to link outreach services, drop-in centers, safe consumption sites and needle exchange programs,to treatment. When people are ready or think they want to at least try and see and try again, the PCAREprogram is there. Our do “whatever it takes attitude” combined with our highly competent clinical teams have proven uniquely effective during our years of work in the community and especially now during this current COVID 19 crisis.
We provide opioid maintenance therapy in the form of suboxone to populations experiencing addiction and mental health issues in the Baltimore area. We park a mobile treatment van directly outside of the Baltimore City detention center so that just-released people and other community members can easily get the treatment they need. The van is staffed with a team that can offer immediate assessments and treatments to this population. A full clinical team will be at the van Monday through Friday from 7:30am-3pm each week.
The goal of our work at the PCARE van and our other sites is to enhance treatment for opioid use disorder and comorbid mental health disorders, improve treatment outcomes, and reduce overdose deaths in vulnerable populations living in Baltimore City.We collect data and analyze our results in preparation to measure the impact of our work.
We collected data on:
treatment and health outcomes
There is a serious gap in treatment at the jail. Many inmates are suffering from serious addiction and mental health issues. Often, they have experienced trauma in their lives which lead to self-medication with illicit substances. In turn, their substance use leads directly or indirectly to incarceration. While in jail, there is little treatment available. This means that the inmate must wait until their release to receive evidence-based treatment and linkage to on-going care. But research shows that the time immediately after discharge from jail carries the most risk for death, bad events, and recidivism. Gaps in treatment impact the individuals at risk as well as each of us. PCARE is aimed at meeting this gap by bringing treatment to jail. Increased overdose deaths, increased crime, increased recidivism affect us all with high costs, diminished quality of community life and poorer overall public health. Improving treatment is a win for each of us.
Opioid use disorder and overdose death present a serious crisis in public health that is especially devastating to vulnerable populations. Although the numbers vary, the significant proportion of the incarcerated population suffers from opioid and other substance use disorders.
Yet, treatment exists. Treatment is effective. Treatment is safe.