New Substance Abuse Treatment Program Launched

Through their strategic partnership,  Family & Children’s Society (F&CS) and Family Counseling Services (FCS) are now offering outpatient substance abuse treatment in Broome County for those struggling with addiction.  The new clinic is co-located in the outpatient mental health clinic operated by Family & Children’s Society at 257 Main Street in Binghamton.  Co-locating the new service with the mental health clinic provides significant benefit by allowing the agency to better serve individuals with co-occurring disorders. The facility was recently renovated to accommodate the new services with the support of a generous grant from the George and Margaret Mee Charitable Foundation.

“We are very excited to be able to expand our services in Broome County to include addictions counseling and medically assisted treatment,” said FCS/F&CS Executive Director Lisa Hoeschele. “The need is great.”

The new substance abuse clinic provides individual and group based interventions that reflect best practices in the addiction field.  Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) will soon be available as part of the services offered. The substance abuse clinic is open from 8:30 to 4:30 Monday through Friday; evening hours can be requested if needed.  The agency expects to add regularly scheduled evening hours in the near future.

The clinic offers Same Day Access for individuals seeking mental health and/or addiction services; no appointment is needed. “When someone is ready to make positive change they can walk into our agency and start the evaluation process.  Our hope is to engage individuals when they are motivated instead of having to make them wait for a scheduled appointment and risking that their motivation changes,” said Amanda Stout, FCS/F&CS Program Director for Chemical Dependency.

Following evaluation, intensive outpatient services are available in a group setting along with an option for individualized services.  Staff are licensed and certified in their respective fields, including staff who are qualified to provide both mental health and chemical dependency services for individuals with a dual diagnosis.  The agency relies upon research-based treatment practices for heroin and opioid addiction including medically assisted treatment options with both Vivitrol and Suboxone, which will be available once the MAT service is launched.

For the two partner agencies, the Binghamton satellite clinic provides an opportunity to expand addictions treatment in Broome County and the local area. “We know that clients do better with choice and Binghamton offers many quality addictions programs.  Some clients are better served in one location, so we view this as an opportunity to serve those who are having trouble accessing other options in the community.  We anticipate partnering with other providers to serve unmet local needs,” said Mary Peterson, FCS/F&CS Director of Clinic Services.

The agency approaches behavioral healthcare on a continuum of need, assessing mental health, substance use concerns and over-all medical health and well-being.  This co-located clinic allows the agency to coordinate dual diagnosis approaches (MH and addictions) in one setting.  Eventually the agency plans to offer integrated primary care for individuals receiving behavioral health services based on the successful model launched in Cortland County.

Family Counseling Services and The Family & Children’s Society are in the final stages of a merger that assures ongoing availability of essential behavioral health care services for Central New York and the Southern Tier. Family & Children’s Society currently operates as a wholly-owned subsidiary of FCS. With the merger, the expanded agency will employ over 200 clinicians, prescribers and administrative support staff and provide services to over 10,000 people in 22 school and community-based clinics in four counties in Central New York and the Southern Tier.