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AARC: Outpatient recovery center to support youth battling substance use disorder

Update May 22, 2023:

Congratulations to Dr. Matt LaCasse, director at Adolescent Addiction Recovery Center, for being named a Crain’s Detroit Business 2023 Notable Leader in Mental Health! The Children’s Foundation is proud to collaborate with Dr. LaCasse to provide accessible mental health services and substance use disorder treatment to youth in our community. To read the full write-up, click here.

Original post: November 2, 2022

Click here to read an in-depth article on the launch of this unique and essential clinic to support our youth.

The Children’s Foundation and University Pediatricians have announced the opening of the Adolescent Addiction Recovery Center (AARC) at Children’s Hospital of Michigan Troy; AARC is philanthropically funded by The Children’s Foundation and operated by University Pediatricians.

The center is a new, comprehensive, outpatient clinic for adolescents aged 18 and under who are struggling with significant substance use and mental health challenges. AARC is currently scheduling intake appointments and accepts patients regardless of ability to pay.

During vulnerable teen years is often when the disease of addiction develops. Research states that 8.2 percent of adolescents aged 12 to 17 drank alcohol in the past month, and 13.8 used illicit drugs in the past year. As a result, in Michigan, 53,000 kids of the same age group reported having a substance use disorder within the last twelve months.

To complicate issues further for youth struggling, data shows 65% of those with substance use disorder also face mental health challenges such as anxiety, depression, schizophrenia, and others.

Few places in Michigan treat adolescent addiction, let alone simultaneously addressing the patient’s mental health. AARC will specialize in treating severe cases of substance use disorder including addiction to opioids (heroin, fentanyl, prescription opioids), benzodiazepines, alcohol, etc., as well as the mental health challenges of the patient.

“Whether families are unable to afford treatment or they have nowhere to take their child, AARC addresses both,” said Andrew Stein, president & CEO at the Children’s Foundation. “Our goal is to change and save lives by increasing access to care for our kids.”

Dr. Matt LaCasse, child and adolescent psychiatrist specializing in addiction, will serve as director of AARC. In addition to this role, Dr. LaCasse serves as the lead psychiatrist at Children’s Hospital of Michigan. There will be two other staff therapists at AARC who are trained in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Emotionally Focused Therapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Family Therapy, and Motivational Interviewing, among others.

“Addiction is much more than the drug itself,” stated LaCasse. “The clinic’s psychotherapy will focus on empowering youth to make actions that bring them closer to their values and the things they care about and building connectedness with themselves, their families, and those around them.”

Lead donors enabling the center to open include the Jamie Daniels Foundation, the Georgie Ginopolis Endowed Fund, Delta Dental of Michigan, A.A.Van Elslander Foundation, and supporters of The Foundation’s Derby for Kids event.

“This wouldn’t be possible without the generosity of those who are dedicated to improving the health of our youth and building stronger communities,” said Stein.

If you are interested in joining us in this important effort by making a gift, you can do so here or by exploring other ways to give. For more information about AARC services or to make an appointment, please call 248-377-8717 or click here.

For more information or to make an appointment, call 248-377-8717.

Help us improve the health and wellness of more children and families.

You can help us reach more children and families by making a gift to The Children’s Foundation. Click here to make your gift.

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