Delaware Launches ‘Centers of Excellence’ To Help Treat Addiction

Delaware Launches ‘Centers of Excellence’ To Help Treat Addiction

Even though we are California-based, we believe it’s important to look nationwide when it comes to successful addiction treatment models. One that recently caught our eye was centered in Delaware and aims to treat 900 local residents through a revolutionary new service called “Centers of Excellence.”


With help from the Delaware Department of Health and Social Services, this unique approach will include three community hubs constructed throughout the state. Each will be staffed with peer recovery coaches and offer free services to those struggling with dependencies (particularly opioid abuse). It is getting off the ground thanks to $2 million in federal funding.


Though not quite the same as a recovery clinic, the Excellence Centers will work as a go-between for those in the early and severe stages of addiction. People who enter the program will be able to use the Centers to connect to appropriate sober living homes and navigate through the health care system, ensuring the experience does not break their bank accounts. The Excellence Centers will also work to help citizens who have completed treatment, connecting them to employment opportunities and affordable housing options.


“This is so critical for us in our state as we work to ensure every Delawarean who has and suffers from substance addiction have access to quality treatment of a variety of ranges that match where they are in need,” Delaware Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health director Elizabeth Romero told the press. “Whether it’s inpatient, outpatient, sober living facilities, housing or education, they get exactly what they need at the time they need it to support them in a successful recovery.”


Delaware, in particular, has been under the microscope recently because of their drastic increase of reported overdose deaths. 308 lives were lost in 2016 alone, due primarily to the opioid epidemic. And though 2017’s numbers haven’t been totaled quite yet, many are predicting that count is set to drastically increase (particularly when you acknowledge that 24 Delawareans have died in the first month-and-a-half of 2018).


The Delaware Online news site did a very thorough job of outlining the unique services that every Excellence Center will offer. Broken down, they will include…


  • Comprehensive substance use evaluations
  • Individual treatment plans tailored to a patient’s needs and accompanying case management
  • Medication-assisted treatment induction and maintenance, including the use of all three Food and Drug Administration-approved medications: buprenorphine and vivitrol by the start of the program, and methadone within six months
  • Group and individual counseling
  • Links to recovery and transitional housing
  • Trauma-informed psychiatric evaluations and treatment
  • Co-management of behavioral and medical disorders
  • Motivational strategies to increase engagement with treatment
  • Prescription Monitoring Program checks and fluid drug screens, as required by the state division


It obviously has us thinking, can California work on implementing something similar? There is no doubt that opioid overdose deaths are on the rise in our state too and a program like this can be hugely beneficial.



Valley Recovery Blog