This case report profiles a collaborative project between Specialized Outpatient Services, Inc. (SOS), an addiction treatment provider based in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; the Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (ODMHSAS), the Single Stage Agency (SSA) responsible for addiction treatment in the state of Oklahoma; and the Network for the Improvement of Addiction Treatment (NIATx). As part of the NIATx State Pilot Project to Improve Addiction Treatment, SOS and ODMHSAS employed process improvement methods taught by NIATx to significantly reduce the time it takes for patients to enter addiction treatment after a first request.
SOS was able to make a substantial improvement in average time from contact to treatment, which is presented in the chart below. In less than two months, average time from contact to treatment was reduced by 60%, from 29.9 days to 12 days. Meanwhile, ODMHSAS now believes it is better to spend money on patients to get them into treatment, before substance abuse leads to costly institutionalization in the mental health or criminal justice system. [READ MORE]