In the landscape of the rural SUD crisis, creating connective experiences that can help guide and support across the entire spectrum is paramount to having success in this crisis. Arbor Place, a prevention, treatment, and recovery services provider in rural western Wisconsin, exemplifies this ethos through its innovative approach to care. Led by Executive Director Jill Gamez, Arbor Place embraces a philosophy of constant evolution, always seeking novel strategies to enhance client care.

Fostering Connective Experiences to Support Individuals with SUD In Rural Wisconsin

In the broader context of addressing the substance use disorder (SUD) crisis, fostering connective experiences that guide and support individuals across all facets of mental health and substance use disorder care is essential for success. Arbor Place, a provider of prevention, treatment, and recovery services located in rural western Wisconsin, embodies this principle through its innovative approach to care. Under the leadership of Executive Director Jill Gamez, Arbor Place continually evolves its practices, actively pursuing new strategies to enhance client care and support.

Arbor Place partners with CHESS Health to boost rural community outreach and recovery support in western Wisconsin. Despite common rural challenges like limited access and resources, Arbor Place is pioneering innovative solutions to effectively meet the needs of its population.

To address this challenge, Arbor Place has deployed eIntervention, a closed-loop referral system that is helping to strengthen ties with community partners, weaving a tighter web of support. Bridge to Hope, an organization that aids survivors of domestic abuse is using this tool to connect its clients to needed treatment. Jennifer McDermid, director of domestic abuse victim services noted, “We all know the reality is that all of these things can co-occur. And more often than not, that is what’s happening.

We all know the reality is that all of these things can co-occur. It’s great that we can link them with somebody who can support them.

Jennifer McDermid, Director of Domestic Abuse, Bridge to Hope

There have been a lot of AODA concerns with some of our clients, just a lot of the trauma they are coming from. It’s great that we can link them with somebody who can support them through that since most of us are not AODA counselors. That extra layer of support helps us in a big way.”

Another vital referral partner is the Menomonie Police Department, often the initial point of contact for individuals with SUD. Equipping their officers with essential tools to connect individuals with crucial community resources like Arbor Place has been paramount. Officer Aaron Bergh emphasizes how these tools enhance their diversion program and empower officers to make referrals to community resources that are more effective in breaking the cycle of addiction than traditional justice-involved routes.

eIntervention has had a positive impact, with 88% of referrals closed, it means more individuals are gaining access to the resources they need- across multiple community organizations – ensuring no individual falls through the cracks.

Key Results.

  • 88% of referrals were closed

Once in care,  Arbor Place is deploying the eRecovery solution with its evidence-based Connections app. Seamlessly integrating into their continuum of care, this digital health tool provides clients with vital recovery support while offering providers a dashboard to monitor client progress and interaction. Kora Ramirez, Arbor Place’s state opioid response coordinator, views the eRecovery Solution and its client-facing Connections app as a lifeline, extending treatment and recovery support programming. The tool offers coping and recovery tools, 24/7 support, online support meetings, digital CBT, and peer engagement.

They want something that’s right on their phones, where they can access meetings or talk to people

Kora Ramirez, state opioid response coordinator, Arbor Place

It is available when their providers and team are not. “They (her clients) always appear excited about it,” she adds. “They want something that’s right on their phones, where they can access meetings or talk to people. And it’s a cool way to communicate with the staff here as well.” 

Additionally, with the recent addition of contingency management, they can now integrate incentives for clients to complete their program assignments, further enhancing their engagement and progress.

Read the full case study “Creating a Web of Support In Rural Wisconsin” to see how Arbor Place is using innovation to address the complex challenges of substance use disorder and mental health care in their rural community.