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The West End Clinic at Massachusetts General Hospital is an outpatient facility for those with substance use disorders and co-occurring mental health disorders.
The clinic offers a wide range of outpatient therapies, including:
The clinic also offers educational and treatment resources for people with substance use disorders. In addition to providing treatment and education, the West End Clinic helps patients and families navigate what can be burdensome insurance issues.
We work with each patient to determine the best course of treatment, and this multidisciplinary approach helps ensure our patients and their families receive the best care possible.
"I always thought everyone was against me. When I got that out of my head, I realized there are people who care, and if I work the steps and work the program there is success and there is recovery." ~ Anthony
Watch the video to hear Anthony's story and his experience at the West End Clinic.
Our ServicesOur services include individual counseling, family and couples therapy sessions, group therapy and medication management
Meet Our StaffOur staff of clinicians is focused on providing needed services to adults and young adults
Group Therapy OptionsWe offer a robust group therapy program to meet the needs of patients in any stage of recovery
Contact UsContact us for more information about any of our programs
The West End Clinic offers a wide variety of treatment options for people with all types of substance use disorders and addictive behavior. We work with each patient to review your history, understand your current needs and make recommendations for the most appropriate treatment options.
Note: Specialized treatment for young adults between 14-26 with substance use disorders is offered through the Addiction Recovery Management Service at Mass General.
The West End Clinic also provides resources for hospital staff concerning issues of patient management, treatment, planning and resources, discharge planning, employee assistance and general information on substance use disorders. The West End Clinic maintains special clinical ties to other service areas, including Infectious Diseases and HIV, OB/GYN, Geriatric Medicine, Liver and Kidney Transplant and the Center for Pain Medicine, due to the high rate of co-occurring medical issues and substance use disorders.
In addition, the West End Clinic offers professional training and peer supervision opportunities for medical professionals.
Medical Director, Addiction Services at the West End Clinic
E. Nalan Ward, MD, is an instructor in psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. She received her medical degree from Ankara University School of Medicine and completed her residency in psychiatry at the SSK Ankara Training Hospital in Turkey.
Dr. Ward then pursued her career in the U.S. and completed her psychiatry residency and fellowship in addiction psychiatry at Boston University Medical Center. Dr. Ward has been working as the medical director of North Charles Institute for Addictions, Methadone Program since 2002. Her areas of interest are opioid substitution therapies, pain management of addicted patients, and eating disorders in substance abusing patients. Dr. Ward is board certified in adult and addiction psychiatry.
Associate Medical Director
Karsten Kueppenbender, MD, CGP, oversees the group therapy program at the West End Clinic. He is also a part-time instructor in psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, where he teaches and supervises residents and postgraduate fellows. He facilitates groups that help patients with alcohol and drug use disorders, with or without co-occurring psychiatric illnesses, tailored to motivation and interest of the participants: from people who are beginning to wonder if their substance use interferes with competing life goals, to those committed to abstinence and value group therapy as a tool to living a productive and fulfilled life in recovery. In addition, Dr. Kueppenbender offers medication management in individual and group visits.
Dr. Kueppenbender consults with malpractice insurers across the nation. Since 2008 he has been facilitating peer resource and support groups for doctors and nurses who have experienced adverse events or faced a malpractice claim. He teaches nationwide on navigating the aftermath of adverse events and litigation, and on cultivating humanity and self-care in the practice of medicine. He is a member of the clinical advisory committee of the Massachusetts Physicians Health Service.
Dr. Kueppenbender graduated summa cum laude from Albert Ludwigs University Medical School in Freiburg, Germany, with doctorate degrees in medicine and neuropharmacology. He is a graduate of Harvard Medical School’s residency in psychiatry and the Partners Healthcare fellowship in addiction psychiatry. He also has advanced training in group psychotherapy.
Associate Clinical Director
Georgia Stathopoulou, PhD, is a clinical psychologist with extensive experience in the individual and group treatment of substance use disorders and other concurrent mental health disorders, such as PTSD, mood and anxiety disorders. In addition to her clinical interests, she is also engaged in research examining common underlying factors in both substance use and mental health conditions. She is also interested in gender differences in substance use disorders, issues related to women’s mental health and community psychology.
As the associate clinical director of the West End Clinic she focuses on program development to enhance the psychosocial services offered in the clinic by integrating the most updated evidence-based treatments for substance use and mental health disorders.
Dr. Stathopoulou is also works with the Community Psychiatry Program offering psychological services to homeless individuals with severe mental health and substance use issues. She also trains psychiatry residents during their Community Psychiatry rotations and provides training and supervision to psychiatry residents and psychology fellows.
Clinical Care Coordinator
Jennifer Blewett is a licensed independent clinical social worker and is also certified as a school social worker in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. She joined the West End Clinic in 2013 as the clinical care coordinator and has over ten years of experience working in the mental health profession. Before joining Mass General, Jennifer had gained extensive experience working with patients and their families within inpatient treatment settings at Mclean Hospital in Belmont, Massachusetts. In her social work career, she has worked and volunteered in a variety of clinical and secondary school settings, including as a mentor for social work graduate students and post-graduate social work trainees working toward clinical licensure. Jennifer is dedicated to helping patients transform their lives through a cognitive behavioral structure and pursue their personal and therapeutic goals. Jennifer provides both individual and group psychotherapy at the clinic.
Jennifer received her undergraduate degree from Northeastern University, where she played Division 1 field hockey and earned her master’s degree in social work from the Graduate School of Social Work at Boston College, concentrating in both health studies and mental health. Currently she serves as a board member on the Boston College School of Social Work Alumni Board. Jennifer is a member of the National Association of Social Workers (NASW), Association of Group Psychotherapy (AGPA), Northeastern Society for Group Psychotherapy (NSGP) and the Boston College School of Social Work Alumni Association.
Marc G. Bolduc, LICSW, CADC II, CGP is a clinical social worker, a psychotherapist, an advanced level addiction specialist and a certified group psychotherapist. He is a graduate of Westfield State University, Boston College and has had the privilege to train with some exceptional mentors, talented colleagues, and the many patients over the years that have continued to teach him daily.
Marc has been a member of the Department of Psychiatry since 2004. He is a supervisor and teacher in the Center for Group Psychotherapy and Interpersonal Psychotherapy Program. He consults with organizations and provides therapy for individuals, groups, couples and families at the West End Clinic and runs his own private practice in Boston, MA. He is committed to educating communities and developing practitioners in the application of treatments that work.
Marc guides people to initiate and sustain more active, healthy lifestyles and is an experienced athlete and coach. He works with others to acquire awareness, skills and understanding of themselves and others to provide a foundation for happier, more connected relationships. He believes that the richest learning comes from being fully engaged in life and the aim of therapy is to help people endure, cope, perform better at the things that matter most to them, and to not be at the mercy of ones’ thoughts, feelings, behaviors and/or circumstances. Marc’s areas of interest include character development, life enrichment and helping people adapt and heal from experiences of addiction, loneliness, trauma and grief and their impact on one’s well-being.
Stephanie Butler is a psychiatric nurse practitioner at the West End Clinic. She earned her BS in nursing from Quinnipiac University in 2006. She worked as a registered nurse in adult medicine at Mass General for two years before developing a passion for mental health. She started working on the inpatient psychiatric unit as an RN in 2008 and went on to obtain her Masters in Nursing specializing in adult psychiatry from Northeastern University in 2012. Stephanie spent the next three years continuing to work as an RN on Blake 11 and began teaching psychiatric nursing clinical to undergraduate students for both Endicott College and Northeastern University. She became board certified as a psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner in October 2014 and later took a role as a staff psychopharmacologist for the Department of Psychiatry, including both the primary setting and the West End Clinic. She sees patients for medication consultations and follow-ups, assists in Suboxone® maintenance groups and co-manages the Vivitrol® and anti-psychotic injection clinic at Mass General.
Frank Dibert, PhD, is an instructor in psychology at Harvard Medical School. He earned his PhD in counseling psychology from Boston University and his Master of Divinity from Harvard University. Prior to arriving at the West End Clinic, Dr. Dibert worked as a psychologist at Boston University’s Center for Anxiety and Related Disorders, where he treated individuals with anxiety and mood disorders. He was also a research therapist at the VA Boston Healthcare System, where he treated veterans with psychological trauma and chronic pain.
Dr. Dibert has extensive experience in evidenced-based mental health treatments as well as depth-oriented therapies. He currently leads the process group in the Intensive Outpatient Program as well as a mindfulness group for dual diagnosis patients. He also sees couples as a part of the West End Clinic family program. He deeply values the role of the therapeutic relationship in promoting healing and greater well-being. His areas of special interest include the role of grief in overcoming addiction, the co-occurring nature of trauma and addiction, and healing as a creative process that develops self-acceptance and self-compassion.
Lisa earned her MSW at Boston University and has over 10 years experience working with dual-diagnosis patients. She currently sees people for initial assessments, ongoing individual therapy and leads the psycho-educational groups for the Intensive Outpatient Program. Prior to joining the West End Clinic, Lisa worked with adolescents with a wide variety of behavioral challenges and their families. While Lisa enjoys helping patients with all sorts of life challenges, she is particularly interested in treating people who are dealing with addictions as well as eating disorders and food concerns.
David Eddie, PhD, is a clinical and research fellow in the Department of Psychiatry and a Livingston Fellow at Harvard Medical School. He received his BA from Columbia University and PhD in clinical psychology from Rutgers University and completed his clinical training at Mass General.
Dr. Eddie provides short- and long-term psychotherapy using cognitive behavioral therapy and dialectical behavioral therapy. He is also trained in mindfulness-based cognitive therapy and heart rate variability biofeedback. Dr. Eddie specializes in the treatment of addiction and borderline personality disorder, as well as clinical presentations that commonly co-occur with these problems such as anxiety and depressive disorders.
In addition to his clinical work, Dr. Eddie is a researcher at Mass General’s Recovery Research Institute and Center for Addiction Medicine, where he investigates how problems regulating emotion are implicated in the development and maintenance of addiction.
Daniel Johnson, PhD, is a licensed clinical psychologist and certified health service provider. He specializes in evidence-based cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) and dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) for individuals with mood, anxiety and substance use problems.
Dr. Johnson received his BA in psychology at University of Massachusetts Amherst before completing his MA and PhD in clinical psychology at University of Colorado Boulder. He completed his predoctoral internship at McLean Hospital/Harvard Medical School and completed his postdoctoral fellowship in the Veteran’s Administration Boston Healthcare System.
Dr. Johnson has received extensive training in providing evidence-based therapies such as CBT, ACT and DBT, for substance use disorders and a wide range of co-occurring mental health diagnoses, including bipolar disorder, depression, trauma-related disorders and anxiety disorders. In addition to his work at the West End Clinic, Dr. Johnson is a staff psychologist at Boston Child Study Center where he works with adolescents and young adults with mood and anxiety disorders. Dr. Johnson is also an instructor in psychology at Harvard Medical School and he has published and presented internationally on his research examining risk and resilience factors for mood disorders in adolescents and adults.
Allison Labbe, PhD, is a licensed clinical psychologist, an instructor in psychology at the Harvard Medical School and an assistant in psychology at the Massachusetts General Hospital. She earned her degree in clinical health psychology from Syracuse University in 2012. Dr. Labbe has extensive experience in evidence-based treatments, especially Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT). She currently sees patients for individual CBT and leads the DBT for substance use groups at the West End Clinic.
In addition to working at the West End Clinic, Dr. Labbe also serves as a psychologist in the Behavioral Medicine Program. In this capacity, Dr. Labbe works with patients who have chronic medical illnesses and co-occurring mental health issues. Dr. Labbe values the importance of the mind-body connection and strives to incorporate this into her practice. Dr. Labbe also conducts research; her primary interests include developing and testing behavioral interventions to improve treatment engagement for medical illnesses (e.g., Hepatitis C, HIV) among patients with current or previous substance use problems.
Toby Lynch, PhD is an instructor in psychology at the Harvard Medical School. Dr. Lynch earned his PhD in clinical psychology from University of Detroit Mercy and completed his predoctoral residency at University of Texas Health Science Center. Prior to arriving at the West End Clinic, Dr. Lynch worked at VA Boston Healthcare System where he provided treatment services to veterans with substance use disorders and held faculty academic appointments at Harvard Medical School and Boston University School of Medicine. He has experience treating individuals with substance use disorders across multiple levels of care and in diverse clinical roles.
Dr. Lynch’s approach is person-centered and informed by his backgrounds in cognitive behavioral and psychodynamic therapies. He specializes in providing therapy to individuals with substance use and co-occurring mood, anxiety, and trauma-related disorders. Dr. Lynch is uniquely qualified to treat individuals with substance use disorder and co-occurring PTSD using cognitive processing therapy, prolonged exposure, DBT and other evidence-based approaches.
As a group therapist, Dr. Lynch leads Men Overcoming Addiction & Trauma, a CBT-based group therapy for men with substance use disorders and a history of psychological trauma. He also leads CBT for Relapse Prevention, DBT for Substance Use Disorders and a Psychoeducation Group as part of the Evening Intensive Outpatient Program.
Meredith Morrison, RN, MSN, is originally from Philadelphia and transplanted here following graduating with a bachelor’s degree in foreign languages and literature from the University of Delaware. She started working in the Outpatient Psychiatry Department at Mass General as the administrative float in 2011 and later became the patient service coordinator at the Depression Clinical and Research Program in 2014. After shadowing a few people of different occupations in the department, Meredith applied to the accelerated direct entry program at MGH Institute of Health Professions (IHP). She graduated from the IHP with her bachelor’s and master’s in nursing in May 2018. Meredith’s psychiatric clinical nursing experience includes the Addictions Consult Team at Mass General, the Department of Mental Health, Merrimack Valley Counseling Center and the Short-term Unit at McLean Hospital. She is very passionate about working with this population.
Vinod Rao, MD, is an instructor in psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. He completed his medical school and graduate school at Washington University in St. Louis. He then trained at the Mass General/McLean adult psychiatry residency and then a pursued specialty training at the Partners Healthcare Addiction Psychiatry Fellowship.
Although Dr. Rao has done graduate and postdoctoral research studying the neurobiology of decision-making and rewards, he currently focuses his energies on improving how we measure our patients’ progress, a direction he pursues as Quality Assurance Officer at the West End Clinic. Dr. Rao uses a combination of psychopharmacology, individual therapy and group therapy approaches to help direct patients toward recovery.
Estee Sharon, PsyD, is a licensed clinical psychologist at Mass General and in a private office in Boston. She is an assistant clinical professor of psychology in the Department of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and Mass General. Dr. Sharon earned her masters degree in clinical psychology from Tel Aviv University in Israel and her PsyD from Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology (MSPP) in Boston and later returned to MSPP to earn an MS degree in clinical psychopharmacology.
Dr. Sharon provides short and long-term psychotherapy using psychodynamic, cognitive-behavioral or system approaches. She treats individuals and couples presenting with an array of relational difficulties/conflicts or emotional disorders, including addiction, anxiety, depression and bereavement. In addition, Dr. Sharon has expertise in substance use disorders and in working with spouses of substance abusing patients who seek help in bringing their loved ones to treatment while also reflecting upon their own co-dependence.
At Harvard Medical School, Dr. Sharon teaches third year medical students and she is an examiner in the Observational Structured Clinical Exam for second and fourth year students. She also provides seminars in Cultural Sensitivity among Diverse Patients to international students visiting through Harvard Medical International. Dr. Sharon is an active member of the Cultural Competent Care Education Committee at Harvard Medical School and of the Diversity Committee in the Department of Psychiatry. Prior to her full-time dedication to teaching and patients care, Dr. Sharon served as the associate director of Addiction Services at Mass General.
Tahir Tellioglu, MD, is from Turkey where he received his MD degree. He came to the US as a postdoctoral neuroscience researcher to University of Pittsburgh. Tahir started his psychiatry residency at Vanderbilt University and then completed it at Yale University. He also completed his addiction fellowship at Yale. Tahir comes from working at the Rhode Island Hospital as the division director of substance abuse clinic and was on the faculty at Brown University for the last 12 years. His areas of interest are mainly psychopharmacology, dual diagnose, opioid dependence and ADHD.
Christoforos Iraklis Giakoumatos, MD is an addiction psychiatry fellow for 2018-2019. Dr. Christoforos Iraklis Giakoumatos just completed his residency training at the Harvard South Shore (HSS) Psychiatry Residency Training Program. Prior to joining HSS in 2014, he attended the Medical School at the University of Athens, Greece. After graduating from medical school and before joining HSS, he conducted research at the Massachusetts Mental Health Center/Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in the area of psychosis and brain imaging. He has published peer-reviewed articles and given presentations in local, national and international meetings.
Dr. Giakoumatos also serves as an assistant editor at the Harvard Review of Psychiatry.
Patient Service Coordinator
Rachel graduated with a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Union College in Schenectady, NY. She has been working at the West End Clinic since 2008. Rachel has a professional interest in supporting those with substance use disorders and is the first contacts for all patients who arrive for care. Rachel coordinates and manages all insurance, billing and other logistics for patient visits. Rachel has received the Pamela J. Ellis Memorial Award in 2014, 2015, 2016 for dedication, hard work and excellent service. She has also received the Partners in Excellence award, 2011, 2013 and 2016, for exemplary performance and contributions above and beyond the call of duty.
Archana Patel is responsible for the operational and administrative management for the West End Clinic. Archana’s undergraduate studies included working closely with the geriatric populations and has five years’ experience in psychiatry. Her graduate studies focused on human services at the University of Massachusetts where she learned the tools of project managements and strategic planning. She has over eight years of experience working in healthcare administration and is passionate about patient advocacy. She enjoys working on creative ways to improve the healthcare system and educating staff around hospital regulations.
Mayra graduated with a bachelor’s degree in management & leadership in 2015 from the University of Massachusetts. Mayra helps covers the front desk and is able to provide support to both patients and staff. She has strong communication skills and the ability to converse comfortably with patients, caregivers and visitors, as well as clinical and administrative staff. She helps coordinate clinic workflows and schedules. Mayra is bilingual and speaks Spanish.
The West End Clinic offers diverse modalities for group therapy and are held at the West End Clinic, located at Massachusetts General Hospital. Please be aware that the we also offers Day and Evening Intensive Outpatient Programs.
Interested in Group Therapy?
Any patient interested in enrolling in group therapy at the West End Clinic, must complete a new patient evaluation prior to enrolling. For more questions, please contact the Psychiatric Access Line at email@example.com or call 617-724-7792.
These groups are integrated model groups that provide an opportunity for on-going support, skill-building and psycho-education for patients who have been prescribed Suboxone®. Group work is focused upon reinforcing abstinence and encourages communication and problem-solving around stressors. Opiate Maintenance Groups are offered at varying intervals during the week with rolling admission.
Group Leader: Karsten Kueppenbender, MDTime: Mondays, 9:00 am - 10:00 am
Group Leader: Nalan Ward, MDTime: Fridays, 10:00 am - 11:00 am
Group Leaders: Karsten Kueppenbender, MD, and Jennifer Blewett, LICSWTime: Wednesdays, 9:00 am - 10:00 am
Process group, mixed gender for adults who are focused on maintaining abstinence from opiates and reducing their use of other substances of abuse. The purpose of the group is to support and sustain patients' commitment to abstinence from heroin and pills and support their recovery.
Weekly toxicology monitoring on Mondays and Tuesdays. Attendance of the group on Wednesdays is required to receive a prescription for buprenorphine/naloxone.
Relapse Prevention is a foundation group designed to support individuals with substance abuse or dependence histories who are in early recovery. The focus is on psycho-education and skills to reduce the risk of relapse and improve coping. The group will explore critical relapse prevention skills, with a focus on learning to manage triggers, feelings and identify and challenge distorted thinking patterns. Participants will develop a greater network of recovery resources to aid in relapse prevention.
Group Leader: Toby Lynch, PhD, and Allison Labbe, PhDTime: Tuesdays 3:00 pm - 4:00pm
This time managed group provides opportunities for peer support and guidance. Participants seeking support for abstinence are welcome and can join at any point in the group.
Group Leader: Frank Dibert, PhDTime: Tuesdays, 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm
The goals of this group are to develop awareness of depressive-related triggers and habitual reactions and learn ways to create a pause in this seemingly automatic process. It also helps foster and support a kind, compassionate approach toward ourselves and one’s depression and build a lifestyle that supports mindfulness practice, emotional well-being and recovery.
Our Readiness Group welcomes members who would like support during the early stages of recovery. Topics covered include reducing the use of substances or abstinence. The group facilitates engagement with additional addictions programming and assists with treatment referrals and recommendations.
Group Leader: Jennifer Blewett, LICSWTime: Thursdays, 12:00 pm - 1:00 p
Group Leader: Daniel Johnson, PhDTime: Mondays, 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
This group will be focused on pursuing a fulfilling life for people at any stage of recovery, whether you are using substances or not. ACT is a present-moment focused therapy that can help you identify your values and learn ways to move toward your values in everyday life. ACT also focuses on how we try to escape from discomfort (e.g. painful emotions, thoughts, sensations) by using substances and other problematic behaviors and how doing so gets in the way of truly living.
Group Leader: Toby Lynch, PhD, and Daniel Johnson, PhDTime: Thursdays, 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm
This group is open to male patients dealing with both post-traumatic stress and substance use/dependence. Prospective group members should be in recovery from substance use/dependence or motivated to reduce their alcohol or other substance intake. This group is present-focused, meaning group members do not disclose details about their trauma in session.
Group Leader: Georgia Stathopoulou, PhDTime: Wednesdays, 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm
This group focuses on the unique concerns of women who are building skills in recovery. Women in this group will learn specific skills and strategies to prevent relapse and promote recovery. In this group, we will explore topics such as the effect of substances on women’s health, managing triggers and high-risk situations, coping with stress and the effect of intimate partners on recovery.
These groups are semi-structured and process-oriented. They are useful for individuals who are looking for a setting in which to talk about their history with recovery, difficult life experiences, feelings in a safe confidential environment and to get support from others.
Group Leader: Karsten Kueppenbender, MDTime: Wednesdays, 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
This group is comprised of individuals who have completed other treatment through the West End Clinic (IOP, Relapse Prevention, etc.) and are looking for continued group support for ongoing recovery. This is an abstinence-based, open discussion group with topics related to developing a balanced, sober lifestyle. Discussion topics include developing sober coping skills for stressful situations, managing interpersonal relationships, recognizing urges and thoughts of use and coping with such in a sober manner.
Group Leader: Marc Bolduc, LICSW, CADC II, CGPTime: Wednesdays, 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
This is an open-ended, mixed gender group for people in recovery. The group provides a supportive structure and interactional opportunities that will allow members to exercise power, make decisions and develop intentions that support envisioned hopes and goals. We explore the psychological and environmental forces that have contributed to members' substance use.
Individuals may use self-destructive behaviors to cope with intense negative emotions. Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) provides skills and training that can help people gain more control over negative emotional states and reduce the need for drugs or alcohol. DBT teaches four different sets of skills: core mindfulness, distress tolerance, emotion regulation and interpersonal effectiveness.
Group Leaders: Allison Labbe, PhD, and Toby Lynch, PhDTime: Fridays, 1:30 pm - 3:00 pm
Structured therapy designed specifically for patients with borderline personality disorder and related symptoms, who have no previous DBT skills training. This group is designed to assist patients in their use of DBT skills and principles.
16 Blossom Street, 1st floorBoston, MA 02114
Walk-in clinic for first-time patients: Tuesdays and Fridays starting at 10:00 am.
Please note: The Walk-in clinic is on a first come, first serve basis. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. Patients are required to have an Mass General primary care physician (PCP) or specialty provider.
The Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) serves as a step down care for patients who received detoxification and medical care who are ready for treatment, but have had little or no outpatient treatment in the past. For patients who are currently outpatient but need to have more services to achieve recovery, IOP serves as a higher level of care. We accept patients over 18 years old.
The IOP provides services three hours a day, three days a week, for four weeks:
The program provides curriculum based psycho-education group followed by a process group for patients with co-morbid mental health and substance use disorder diagnoses provide in a group format.The curriculum includes topics such as:
Each patient is assigned a provider for individual check-ins during the course of the week. The IOP team meets three times a week for rounds to discuss patients. During these meetings the team reviews the patient progress, or problems, and noncompliance. Individual providers communicate the suggestions or feedback with each patient.
One very important piece of our program is the psychopharmacology evaluation. Medication management is usually provided once a week, but occurs more often if need be. In addition to commonly used psychiatric medication, we provide treatment with medications to treat specific to addiction issues, such as naltrexone, acamprosate, disulfiram, topiramate and buprenorphine (Suboxone®).
During their IOP treatment patients receive case management services for issues related to housing, disability, FMLA, legal, coordination of care, communication with other providers.
There is medical coverage everyday for all WEC patients, including IOP patients. It is not uncommon that IOP patients may need to be assessed by a clinician during their treatment with us for issues such as medication side effects, sedation, withdrawal symptoms or safety issues.
Facilitated by: Lisa Du Breuil, LICSW, Frank Dibert, PhD, Estee Sharon, PsyD
The Recovery & Relationship Enhancement Program invites family members or friends – generally called “supportive significant others” (SSO) - to actively participate in the treatment of their loved ones and enhance support for recovery through education and explorations of the impact of addiction and recovery on both patients and their families. Research has shown that SSO involvement can help improve treatment outcomes. Motivational interviewing strategies are used to explore patients’ thoughts about having SSO involvement and encourage them to join the program.
Once patients with substance use disorders undergo intake at the West End Clinic and actively pursue our services, they become eligible for this program.
Facilitated by: Estee Sharon, PsyD, Marc Bolduc, LICSW, Frank Dibert, PhD, and Jennifer Blewett, LICSW
There are two ways to access the program:
Vivitrol® is FDA approved for the treatment of alcohol use disorders and opioid use disorders. Naltrexone in intramuscular form (Vivitrol®) has been demonstrated to be effective in reducing alcohol consumption and assisting in sobriety. Patients who are able to abstain from alcohol (even for a short time) are appropriate for an injection of intramuscular naltrexone.
The West End Clinic oversees an injection clinic based in Wang 8 at Mass General where intramuscular naltrexone can be administered. We will assist in evaluating criteria for naltrexone as well as prior authorization related to the medication.
Opioid-dependent patients who are in need and eligible for office-based opioid substitution therapy e.g. buprenorphine (Suboxone®) are admitted on a special track to the Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP).
After completing a first-time evaluation with the West End Clinic and a Suboxone® evaluation with a physician, eligible patients start the IOP and are seen by our Suboxone® providers for induction. During the week of their induction, these patients are seen three to four times in that week by an MD or RN. Suboxone patients continue receive all the other services provided to IOP patients.
Upon completing the IOP, Suboxone® patients are required to attend a Suboxone® Recovery Group that meets once a week (see days offered on the Group Therapy list) for a minimum of six months. After six months, patients are reassessed and considered for more individualized treatment.
In addition to providing exemplary therapeutic care to patients, the West End Clinic is dedicated to assisting Mass General trainees, including fellows, residents, medical students, psychology and social work interns, and staff clinicians, who are interested in facilitating groups and would like to enhance their knowledge and therapeutic skill.
To support these goals, a peer supervision group has been organized. Within this group, each participating clinician is viewed as an essential element of a “group-as-a-whole” directed toward the understanding of group dynamics and processes. The emphasis is on the presentation of actual clinical material. Group members have the opportunity to comment on the emerging group process and to provide support for the presenting clinician who may be struggling with particular challenges or concerns. Another focus is on addressing all formal aspects of group psychotherapy, including the identification of a clinical need, linking to referral resources, accessing appropriate patient populations, legal and ethical concerns, and the assessment of group process and outcome. Effectively communicating with others involved in the patient's care and monitoring the patient’s overall progress is an overarching priority.
The peer supervision group also offers the following opportunities:
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