Online addiction recovery program launches

Lakewood program treats alcoholism, prescription drug abuse

Joseph Rios
jrios@coloradocommunitymedia.com
Posted 3/19/20

Denver resident Brian Green refers to himself as a veteran of the hospitality industry. He started off at hotels and eventually transitioned to the restaurant industry where his heavy drinking took …

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Online addiction recovery program launches

Lakewood program treats alcoholism, prescription drug abuse

Posted

Denver resident Brian Green refers to himself as a veteran of the hospitality industry. He started off at hotels and eventually transitioned to the restaurant industry where his heavy drinking took off.

“Going to other bars to see your friends when they’re working — that’s your social circle. I didn’t really know what I was doing,” said Green. “I knew it wasn’t common among other industries like it is with restaurants, but I never felt like it was too much.”

Green had always looked at his father as his hero. So when his hero told him he needed help, he went to AspenRidge Recovery, a rehab treatment center with physical facilities in Lakewood and Fort Collins. The rehab center is working to help more people like Green, by offering addiction recovery treatment program that does not require someone to be anywhere near a physical treatment center.

The 100% online program, referred to as AspenRidge REACH, offers all of the same services as the rehab center’s in person program. Participants can take part in the program through their own homes where group and individual sessions are led by licensed therapists like Jeff Burt — AspenRidge Recovery’s clinical director and the primary clinician running REACH.

Burt said him and other therapists from AspenRidge Recovery were hesitant when the REACH program was first introduced to them. He felt like that at first because he said as a therapist, he likes to be in the room with his clients. But since the REACH program started on Feb. 5, Burt said he has been surprised by how well the group of four in the program has worked out.

“You want them to be cohesive and get vulnerable to each other but also to compassionately confront each other, and they’re doing that. You can feel the group coming together, and that’s when the healing happens,” said Burt.

The program is held on Zoom, a video communications service, three nights a week for three hours. REACH involves cognitive behavioral therapy, a psycho-social intervention. It also involves relapse prevention, mindfulness-based treatment curriculums, focus on peer support, skill building, education about addiction and recovery and more.

REACH treats those who are addicted to alcohol, heroin, opioids, cocaine, prescription drugs, benzos, Xanax, marijuana and more.

“This is going to treat those who are in more remote locations, and then beyond that,” said Green.

Ethan Castro, chief executive officer for AspenRidge Recovery, said 975 Coloradans died from substance overdoses in 2018, with rates being highest in rural counties.

“Our clients and families deserve the best and most effective care regardless of where they reside, and we’re honored to be the first to bring this level of treatment via telehealth to people in communities throughout Colorado,” Castro said in a statement.

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