Integrating Peers in Harm Reduction Teams and Opioid Treatment Programs

This webinar event occurred on March 11, 2022 and was facilitated by Brent Ambacher.  In 2017, Louisiana was still an abstinence-only state as far as any treatment options were concerned for those experiencing OUD. Taking up the SAMHSA State Targeted Response (STR) Grant meant a whole new approach was required as it funded medication-assisted treatment (MAT) for the first time, and Peer Support was seen as essential from day one. Each of the state’s ten human services districts put a Peer on staff for the Grant, and each of the state’s ten OTPs hired a resource coordinator to liaise with them.

This presentation encapsulates Louisiana's experiences in setting these steps in motion, the mistakes we’d avoid in future, the teething troubles we’ve experienced, and more importantly, the successes and knowledge we’ve gained along the way. 

Participants will:

  • Discover what peers add to the process in a strictly monitored treatment environment 
  • Learn how they can both assist and anticipate the needs of the counsellors
  • Identify specific roles that can play within an Opioid Trearment Provider (OTP)
  • Learn about the benefits of embedding Peers in harm reduction teams and their role as links between treatment, support services, and the individuals they encounter
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