Blue Care Network of Michigan tests new opioid treatment with 2 mental health facilities

Why is BCN launching these pilots?

“Cost is one factor. We also look at quality of life. Our goal is to help people stay well,” said Beecroft, a psychiatrist, geriatrician and substance abuse specialist. “We have looked at return on investment and if you just treat the individual, you get 2-1 investment return. You spend $10,000 on treatment, and the overall medical spend return is $20,000.”

“Quality of life”? That’s very encouraging, but I’m a naturally skeptical sort.

Let’s see what they are planning.

Beecroft said Blue Care came up with the CLIMB program. CLIMB stands for community-based, life-changing, individualize, medically assigned and evidenced-based treatment. It is intended to add several components to how Maplegrove and Pine Rest treat opioid abuse patients. He said there will be more attention to post-acute care treatment and follow-up.

“We will be looking at how best to use recovery coaches, case managers from the plan, visiting and social workers to the home,” he said.

Bulat said she and other addiction specialist experts help Blue Care refine its CLIMB program. “They have the pilot now to track and see what we are doing to encourage others (providers) to do the same,” she said.

That kind of long-term and person-in-environment approach sounds like it could be a very good thing.

Hats off to Dr. Bulat (a friend of the Farm), BCN and Maplegrove. I wish them success.