West Virginia expands Connections App for individuals recovering from substance abuse

West Virginia expands Connections App for individuals recovering from substance abuse
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The West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources’ Office of Drug Control Policy recently expanded the availability of its Connections App.

The app was launched in April to reduce isolation and offer support resources to Substance Use Disorder (SUD) patients during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Originally, the app was available only to patients connected to treatment providers. It has been expanded to include people in recovery who are no longer affiliated with a provider but could still benefit from resources.

“In the midst of a pandemic, it is vital that we quickly enable a strategy for individuals in SUD treatment to maintain the connection and support they desperately need for ongoing recovery,” Dr. James H. Berry, chairman of West Virginia University’s Department of Behavioral Medicine and Psychiatry, said.

Users can assess video, audio, and written content; take digital cognitive behavioral therapy to reinforce key recovery skills; receive appointment and medication reminders; participate in online moderated discussion groups with peers, clinicians, and peer recovery support specialists to address patient isolation and provide 24/7 support; and track the recovery progress through daily and weekly check-ins, sobriety tracking, and treatment planning functions.

Rochester, N.Y., based CHESS Health developed the app while First Choice Health Systems provides support services.

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