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Addressing Substance Abuse in Silicon Valley
Silicon Valley has been seeking ways to address substance abuse and innovate addiction treatment.
"Much of the country has been hijacked by the opioid epidemic [but] Santa Clara County remains higher in methamphetamine and alcohol admissions,"
"For many years now, the majority of people admitted to treatment centers are polysubstance addicted."
Addiction treatment providers in Santa Clara County are now uniting with other officials to end drug abuse.
"We have a strong criminal justice reform effort in our area — with attempts to address the homelessness, unemployment, and family disruption that is created by an addicted lifestyle," Cook said.
"We are operating with an integrated behavioral health system, with increased attempts to engage clients for treatment through the primary care physician or mental health system."
She said that most addiction treatment programs in Silicon Valley include assessments and interventions.
"The county's system is entirely evidence-based with treatment drawn from the SAMHSA evidence-based treatment list. I'm very impressed with motivational interviewing – a 'meet the client where they are' philosophy in treatment. Client engagement is an art and can't necessarily be quantified."
Cook started her career as a rehab counselor in the 80s and watched the addiction treatment industry in San Jose and Santa Clara County transform.
"When I started we didn't treat co-occurring disorders," she said. "Clients had to give up their psych medications to stay in treatment or a sober living home, and you had to be sober 72 hours to be admitted to a sober living home. Treatment is far more individualized, psychiatric medications and craving management are integrated into treatment, and now we have so many different levels of care."