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ALCOHOLISM & DRUG ABUSE WEEKLY ‘Monday, April 28,2003 Vol. 15,No.17, ppl, 6 Ga. seeks statewide implementation of dual- diagnosis strategy ‘Any clinician canbe ened in aking a diferent treatment apyroach that may improve ‘esults for a hard--seach patient's what eppens when that cinch lave raining and ‘etuns tothe workplace that detesmines whether nice dea blowoms no an innovation, Georgia substance abuse and mental health officials had become sccustomed to seeing ‘Providers take thre days out oftheir schedule to attend a seminar on tet practices, only to retu to their program sites and resume with busines as urual. Ther atiempt to make provider taining ‘mare relevant and applicable to everyday clinical practic is leading t significant progress _meeting the needs of patients with co-occurring addiction and metal ess. Officials within the state Division of Mental Health, Developmental Disabilies & ‘Addictive Disease decided several years ago that they would werk ough the state's service ‘system of regional boars and ther local contract providers to improve provider training. Asking _roviders about which areas they needed assistance with to improve th quality oftheir services, ‘any said they needed better waye to identify and address the problema of people with co- ‘occurring disorders, ssid Chery Fin, the division's adult mental heath program services chief, ‘But division officials wanted to avoid a didactic approach tothe provider training. ‘Looking fer a tining method that would foree provides to implemeat what they eam (ad aleo ‘would require providers" supervisors to give them the leeway to doit) they came wpon the ‘consulting work of New York-based Kathleen Sciacca, She is « program developer and tuner ‘whoee Scisoca Comprehensive Service Development for MIDAA (Metal Iiness, Dag ‘Addition and Alcooism) model has been presented and implementa atthe program and ‘government agency level in many jurisdictions across the cour. Sciacca describes her approach as combining education, taining nd progam Implementation of new treatment approaches st provider sites begins during, not Sc elng ped Tag perp ho ae pal cmc races ‘therefore have the opportmity to report back to the group on their progres while traning is til ‘oceuing. “They receive direct feedback on ther specific cases, nt justffom me but om the otbier providers," Sciacea tld ADAW. “Some in te group ae looking a each case through the eyes of ‘ma addiction counselor, some through the eyes ofa mental health coueelor, some through the eyes ofa homeless services provider.” In addition, Sciacea’s approach involves frequent contact betveen her and the managers of the counseling staff be is training. This is done in order to track implementation ofthe lessons Jeamed in waning. “We want to determine whether or not the programs are being implemented without my disruptions to existing services,” Sciacca said. “While Scie has conducted dual-isgnosstninings in many states where officals want ‘te improve sssesament and treatment services fr ths population, abe believes Georgia behavioral eal ofits are going beyond whst she usually see in articulating a statewide commitment to improved services. “This is « commitment titi coming from the top” she said. “It goes cress systems. “The effort isto develop continuity of care and consistency among programs” in their approsch to ‘the dually diagnosed population. Spirit of cooperation While the presence of Sciacen’s traning method in Georgia is relatively new, th, pound for eacourging inovaive, integrated approaches to eating co-occurring disorders {nthe state's service system bas existed for years. 1 starts with a close working relationship between the mental health and addictive