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Peterborough Regional Heath Centre (PRHC) is pleased to announce the recent opening of the area’s first Rapid Access Addiction Medicine (RAAM) clinic, which provides expedited, barrier-free treatment for patients who are addicted to alcohol or opioids.
The clinic is staffed by PRHC physicians and registered nurses (RNs). No booked appointment or physician referral is necessary, although referrals from doctors, nurses, social workers, addiction counselors and community providers are welcome.
“Our Rapid Access Addiction Medicine clinic provides immediate access to lifesaving treatment by offering same-day counselling and addiction medication, and prescription therapies,” said Dr. Jim McGorman, an Emergency Department physician with PRHC who is now also treating patients at the new clinic. “This care model has been shown to help save lives by engaging patients with both short- and long-term therapies as soon as they are ready to pursue those treatments.”
The Rapid Access Addiction Medicine model is designed to initiate therapy for opioid or alcohol addiction and then triage clients to the most appropriate ongoing care provider. It is not intended to replace or duplicate the care provided by a family physician or a treatment clinic. The Peterborough RAAM clinic is working closely with other healthcare providers and resources in the community to ensure patients have access to additional supports following their initial treatment, as they move through the continuum of care.
PRHC’s RAAM clinic has been made possible through a $200,000 commitment from the Ministry of Health and the Central East Local Health Integration Network (LHIN). The RAAM clinic model has been implemented in cities across Ontario, where it is helping to prevent opiate overdoses and reduce ED visits and inpatient stays for people with addictions.
“The Central East LHIN, together with the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care and our health service provider partners, is committed to improving access to comphrehensive care for people living with substance abuse disorders,” said Deborah Hammons, CEO of the Central East LHIN. “We look forward to seeing how the opening of the Rapid Access Addiction Medicine (RAAM) clinic at Peterborough Regional Health Centre will have a positive impact on our ability to support individuals dealing with an opiate addiction by providing them with timely treatment, counselling and other supports. The development and implementation of RAAM clinics in Oshawa, Scarborough and now in Peterborough is an important part of the recently released Central East LHIN Opioid Strategy as we collectively respond in an integrated and coordinated way to addressing the opioid crisis in each of our sub-regions.”
The RAAM clinic has been operating in its downtown location at 159 King St. Suite 302 (co-located with PARN) since March 5. It is open Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 8:00 a.m. to 11 a.m.
For further information, please contact:
Peterborough Regional Health Centre
705-743-2121 x. 4259
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With the help and support of two physician locums, we were able to see 509 patients from July 3, 2017 to September 1, 2017, in our walk-in clinics. Of the total number of patients seen, less than 6% were rostered patients of our physicians. We hope to be able to continue the walk-in clinics next summer, but we will only be able to with additional physician support.