SACC. Newsletter. Society of Addiction Counselors of Colorado The Colorado Affiliate of NAADAC The Association for Addiction Counselors

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1 SACC Newsletter Society of Addiction Counselors of Colorado The Colorado Affiliate of NAADAC The Association for Addiction Counselors Summer 2006 From Our President Dear SACC Members and Friends, This Summer we welcome eight new Board members. I am deeply grateful for each one and the expertise and passion they bring to SACC. Often in the past the number of Board members has been rather small, meaning that each one worked very hard, contributing many hours and carrying the load between them. It is a wonderful gift to have people both interested in supporting the addiction counseling staff, as well as willing to dedicate some time and energy to the tasks which will move us forward. The legislative issues that affect our membership continue to be a priority as well as the approaching political campaign and election of a new governor for Colorado. Whatever your alliance, it is important that we be well informed about the issues and make the best decisions we can, not only for our personal concerns but for the field of addictions as well. Each month our lobbyist, Pat Steadman, comes to the Board meetings to update us on decisions made, impending concerns, and the potential impact on our interests. Everyone is welcome to attend and ask questions about the issues that concern them. We meet the third Saturday of each month at The Freedom Center, 8670 Wolff Ct. #130, Westminster, Colorado. Our annual meeting in June focused on the possibility of creating a SACC sponsored DUI program application which would be an additional option for counselors in Colorado. A special committee has been formed to consider all the issues that need to be resolved, and to make a proposal to the Board about their position on the viability of moving forward with this project. We welcome any additional comments, interest in participating on the committee, and contributions of relevant ideas for the project. We, as your Board, endeavor to be effective and efficient in directing the business of SACC and always welcome your input about ways we can better address the concerns of the Society of Addiction Counselors of Colorado. Warmest wishes for a wonderful Summer, Jean Armour President INSIDE Page From Our President Legislative Report Independent Living Center Awarded Grant Letter to the Editor Legislature Passes Two Significant Bills to Help with Drunk Driving Cocaine Sentencing Reform Proposed Join Together Brain Activity Patterns Signal Risk of Relapse to Methamphetamine Internet Offers How-To s for Drug Use

2 Legislative Update 2006 By Laurence Freedom The SACC legislative committee has been active in addressing the proposed rules for providing outpatient substance abuse treatment to Medicaid recipients. In the first draft the Licensed Addiction Counselor (LAC) was not clearly written in as one of the licensed professional mental health care givers that could bill for reimbursement to Medicaid for the outpatient services. As a result of the SACC legislative committee efforts the rule writers at the Health Care Finance Policy (HCPF) office has changed the rules to clearly include licensed addiction counselors (LAC) for this privilege and opportunity. If you are a LAC and want to take advantage of being an outpatient substance abuse provider for Medicaid reimbursement, you must apply and become a Medicaid provider. To learn more about the current proposed rules for Medicaid reimbursement or how to apply for being a Medicaid provider go to the website at: On June 16 th a SACC legislative representative joined a group of other licensed mental health as well as medical providers to study the possibility of bringing back continuing education requirements for licensed professionals. Colorado is one of the only states that does not require mental health professionals to develop themselves professionally with required CEU s. The group agreed that the reinstatement of CEU s was beneficial professionally as a conscientious trade organizations but also for assuring better care and greater safety to the public. With the potential change in the executive branch of our state government, all participants believed it was worth pursuing this cause as a full collateral coalition voice possibly in the next upcoming legislative session. Lastly, I want to encourage you all to get active with the political process, especially now with a new governor race taking place and new seats in the house and senate opening up for the 2007 session. In listening to the law makers, what I have learned is they do pay attention when their constituents become visible and let their causes be known. At SACC we have been successful in having a positive effect on shaping some laws and policies that affect all of us in our profession. Keep in mind the more we speak up as one voice, the more we will be listened to. 2

3 INDEPENDENT LIVING CENTER AWARDED SAMHSA GRANT FOR SUBSTANCE ABUSE AND HIV/AIDS AWARENESS AND PREVENTION The Disability Center for Independent Living (DCIL) was recently awarded a grant by the Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration for an Alcohol, Substance Abuse and HIV/AIDS Awareness and Prevention program specifically targeting people with disabilities. DCIL has partnered with the Colorado AIDS Project to distribute information, hold workshops and co-sponsor HIV/AIDS testing events. People with disabilities abuse alcohol and other drugs at a rate often twice that of their able-bodied peers, says Richard Holicky, the project s coordinator. The reasons for such high rates of abuse include increased stress factors, negative attitudes of others regarding disability, myths regarding disability, enabling attitudes of friends and family, constrained social opportunities, chronic under- or unemployment, excessive amount of free time, lowered expectations and low self esteem. The Disability Center is offering informational and educational materials, consumer presentations and professional in-services focusing on the risk factors of drugs and alcohol to people with disabilities, the dangers of combining drugs or alcohol for different disabilities, the adverse effects of combining drugs and alcohol or mixing them with prescription medications, and how drug and alcohol use and abuse place people with disabilities at high risk of HIV/AIDS. Most dismiss the risk of HIV/AIDS to people with disabilities, assuming this group rarely if ever engages in sex; as a result, HIV/AIDS is rarely discussed and often ignored. However, disability does not preclude sexual desire or the ability to act on those desires. In addition, added DCIL s executive director Carol Reynolds, many people with physical disabilities often depend on others for basic daily activities and that dependency places them especially women at risk of sexual abuse and HIV. Recent studies from the University of Alabama at Birmingham have indicated that those with lower income, as well as those with alcohol or substance abuse problems a category into which many people with disabilities fall are being infected in higher numbers in recent years. 3 The Disability Center s efforts to combat these factors will include outreach to rehabilitation centers, mental health centers, independent living centers and support groups. For more information please contact Richard Holicky ( ) or the Disability Center for Independent Living LETTER TO THE EDITOR Dear SACC Newsletter Editor, I couldn t believe it when I opened the May 25-31, 2006 edition of Westword in Denver. On page 14 there was an ad entitled, THE DUI LAWYERS from the Bettenberg Law Firm that included this wording, Memorial Day Tip: Pure alcohol has no odor. How can this be ethical/moral/legal advertising and/or advice from licensed attorneys to potential clients and any other reader of that newspaper? Weren t the attorneys assuming responsibility for someone who consumed Everclear, Vodka or other higher proof hard liquor instead of beer or wine after reading their ad, got pulled over by law enforcement that Memorial Day holiday weekend, was allowed to continue driving because alcohol was not detected by smell on the driver, and then the driver hurt or killed him or herself and/or others? I contacted Patricia Calhoun, Editor of Westword and Westword.com. She stated that her department could not tell advertising what ads to run, however, she did agree to review their policies about running such ads. She thanked me for writing her. I also filed formal complaints against the two attorneys, Alison and Robert Bettenberg with the Colorado Supreme Court Attorney Regulation Counsel and was assigned two separate case numbers. Unfortunately, they weren t thankful for the feedback and they didn t agree to consider any changes. Louise Smith, Esq. and an anonymous committee of fellow attorneys in the same division reviewed my complaints and within two weeks made the following ruling: The ad did not violate any regulations of attorney professional conduct in Colorado. The complaints have been dismissed. Again, I couldn t believe it. Sincerely, Rand L. Kannenberg, LAC Executive Director Criminal Justice Addiction Services Lakewood

4 Legislature Passes Two Significant Bills to Help with Drunk Driving by Annmarie Jensen, Mendez Steadman & Associates DUI Task Force Created The Colorado General Assembly passed, and the Governor signed, two significant pieces of legislation in 2006 to address the ongoing problem of drunk driving. Spurred on by a family whose daughter was killed by a repeat (6 times!) drunk driver, the General Assembly adopted SB SB 192 creates an interagency task force in state government to examine additional ways of addressing drunk driving, and repeat drunk driving in particular. State agencies who are part of the drunk driving enforcement system will sit on the task force, including State Patrol, CDOT, ADAD, probation, courts, the Dept. of Revenue and the Public Defender s office. Additional representatives of interest groups that also shall be appointed include law enforcement, DAs, victims, alcohol industry, the criminal defense bar, and a person under 24 who is enrolled in school. The initial meeting of the task force will be held on or before August 1, 2006, and the task force will convene bi-monthly thereafter. The task force expires in 2011, unless renewed, and must make a report to the legislature in January each year. CDOT is responsible for convening the task force and they are currently in the process of planning the initial meeting. Persistent Drunk Driving/Ignition Interlock Currently, about 15,000 persons are eligible for ignition interlock as a result of the offense of persistent drunk driving. Only about 5,000 people are currently using ignition interlock devices, which are required when a persistent drunk driver reinstates their license. Those not using ignition interlock devices indicate they are voluntarily not reinstating their license, but state officials believe that about 80% of those people are driving anyway. In an effort to encourage persistent drunk drivers to use ignition interlock, and to discourage drunk driving and especially high BAC drunk driving, HB

5 made a series of sweeping changes in the persistent drunk driving law: HB 1171 lowered the BAC level for persistent drunk driving from 0.20 to This level is consistent with other states that have a high BAC law. HB 1171 added those persons who are labeled persistent drunk driver by virtue of high BAC (now 0.17 or above) to those persons required to install ignition interlock for 2 years upon reinstatement of their license. Currently, only certain persons with repeat DUI offenses are labeled persistent drunk drivers and are required to use ignition interlock upon reinstatement of their license. HB 1171 mandated a change in the Department of Revenue driver s license record system to make sure that there was a notation when a person was required to use ignition interlock. Currently, law enforcement has no way of knowing if a person they pull over is supposed to be using ignition interlock. The bill added a $50 surcharge for alcohol and drug related offenses to help pay for treatment and ignition interlock for those persons who are unable to afford them. The surcharge may be waived by the court if the offender is indigent. A procedural change suggested by the Department of Revenue and adopted as an amendment to the bill allows the court to waive the mandatory 6 months revocation for high BAC DUI offenders to allow one month revocation and 5 months suspension if the person also agrees to use ignition interlock. Cocaine Sentencing Reform Proposed July 31, 2006 Four U.S. senators two Democrats and two Republicans are proposing to reform, but not equalize, currently disparate penalties for offenses involving powdered and crack cocaine, the Washington Times reported July 26. The measure introduced by Sens. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), John Cornyn (R-Texas), Mark Pryor (D-Ark.) and Ken Salazar (D-Colo.) would change the amount of crack Celebrate Recovery At the Advocates for Recovery Annual Recovery Rally October 1, a.m. to 3 p.m. Civic Center park seal pond Speakers-Music-Food Family Fun For Everyone!! Join the Voices for Recovery Now! cocaine required to trigger mandatory-minimum sentences from the current 5 grams to 20 grams. At the same time, the amount of powdered cocaine needed to trigger mandatory sentences for possession would drop from 500 grams to 400 grams. The net effect of the Drug Sentencing Reform Act would be to reduce the current sentencing disparity between crack and powdered cocaine from to a more modest Sessions predicted the bill, which he said would shift the emphasis from amount of drugs possessed to the type of crime committed, would result in tougher sentences on the worst and most violent drug offenders and less severe sentences on lower-level, nonviolent offenders. All four lawmakers are former state attorneys general. We not only need just laws, but they need the appearance and reality of fairness, said Cornyn. The ACLU and drug reform groups have long called for equalizing penalties for crack and powdered cocaine, noting that the drugs are chemically identical and that the tougher crack penalties disproportionately effect minorities. Still, Session insisted that crack is a more dangerous commodity, saying it is more addictive and apt to cause paranoia and violence. 5

6 Methamphetamine Disrupts Focus Methamphetamine abuse disrupts one aspect of attentional control more profoundly than others the ability to ignore distractions. Dr. Ruth Salo and her colleagues at the University of California, Davis and Stanford University found that 34 methamphetamine abusers who had been abstinent for at least 4 weeks made more mistakes (17 percent) than did control subjects (13 percent) on tests requiring that they focus on a task and ignore distraction. No difference was found in error rates on tests requiring the participants to switch attention from one task to another. Deficits in the ability to pay attention undermine a patient s effective engagement in cognitivebehavioral therapy, Dr. Salo says, and it is therefore important to identify specific cognitive problems associated with methamphetamine abuse. Biological Psychiatry 57: , NIDA Research Uncovers the Neurobiology of Dread In what is the first brain imaging study of dread, new research supported by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), National Institutes of Health, has shown that people who experience substantial dread about an adverse experience can be biologically distinguished from those who can better tolerate the experience. Understanding how the brains of nonaddicted people guide them in selecting what actions to take when the outcome of a decision is unpleasant lays the foundation for further investigations that can compare how drug abusers brains make such choices. The study is published in the May 5, 2006 issue of the journal Science. Brain imaging technology offers unique insight into the biological mechanisms involved in decision-making, which is invaluable in developing tailored treatment strategies for addiction and drug abuse, says NIH Director Dr. Elias Zerhouni. There is substantial evidence that drug abusers place more value on short-term, rather than long-term outcomes, says NIDA Director Dr. Nora D. Volkow. Past investigations that have looked at how drug abusers make choices have used positive rewards. But this study looked at how people made choices when faced with unpleasant stimuli. In the study, Dr. Gregory Berns of Emory University School of Medicine and his colleagues used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fmri) to create 6 images of brain activity in 32 nondrug-abusing participants awaiting brief electrical shocks to their feet. By charting which regions experience increased blood flow over time, fmri helps scientists understand the relationship between particular types of mental activity and specific areas of the brain. They observed that activity patterns associated with the dread of waiting involved areas of the brain that govern human pain perception. Specifically, the responses were seen in brain areas that appear to be ruled by attention more than regions associated with fear. The scientists determined each participant s maximal pain threshold and then presented them with a series of choices from 36 possibilities. For example, each person could elect to receive a shock that was 30 percent of their threshold in 27 seconds or one that was 60 percent in 9 seconds. We noted that normal, healthy subjects could be divided into two groups - extreme dreaders, who could not tolerate a delay and preferred an immediate (and stronger) painful stimulus; and mild dreaders, who could tolerate a delay for a milder shock, says Dr. Berns. We saw that the extreme dreaders could be distinguished from the mild dreaders by virtue of the information captured on the brain scans. The findings suggest that dread derives, in part, from the attention devoted to the expected physical response and is not simply a fear or anxiety reaction. Continuing to use drugs despite the expectation of the practice s negative effects is a hallmark of addiction, says Dr. Volkow. The results of this study form the foundation for future research to determine whether drug abusers exhibit disruption in the brain systems that process the anticipation of unpleasant consequences. ARE YOU OR A TEENAGER YOU KNOW: Easily Distracted? Using Drugs or Alcohol? Having Difficulty Paying Attention? Synergy Outpatient Services offers a comprehensive evaluation and payment for time and travel to teenagers (13-18) for participating in a medication study for attentiondeficit hyperactivity disorder and substance abuse problems. In addition to medication, teenagers will receive substance use disorder treatment at no cost. For more information, please call Alexie, Ashley, or Rachel. (303) The study principal investigator is Paula Riggs, M.D., Associate Professor, Psychiatry, UCDHSC, (303)

7 Brain Activity Patterns Signal Risk of Relapse to Methamphetamine By Patrick Zickler, NIDA NOTES Contributing Writer NIDA-supported investigators have found that functional magnetic resonance imaging (fmri) of the brain, performed during a psychological test, can predict with high accuracy whether an individual will relapse following treatment for methamphetamine abuse. Their study revealed a characteristic pattern of brain activity in methamphetamine-abusing men who relapsed within 1 to 3 years after completing treatment and a different pattern in men who did not. Here is a link to the study: n.html BHS Training Center 1155 Cherokee St. Denver, CO The most striking aspect of this result is that the fmri pattern has 90 percent accuracy in predicting outcome. The differences in brain activity are pronounced, with little overlap. Internet Offers How-To s for Drug Use July 27, 2006 Want to learn how to smoke the fentanyl found in a pain patch, or get high using cough syrup containing dextromethorphan (DXM)? Some people do, and they re turning to the Internet to get the step-by-step instructions they need, the Chicago Tribune reported July 7. A drug user named Shiva recently detailed online how she tapped six used fentanyl patches she found in the garbage after her grandmother died, pricking them with a needle, pressing out the gel and smoking it. When I follow these simple steps, I feel warm and nice and forget my problems and worries, she wrote. But if I take too much, I ll feel itching all over my body and will be unable to go to the toilet. It is very addictive. Other users spoke of chewing, sucking, eating, or snorting the patches or gel. A simple Google search yields advice on crushing, separating, purifying and chemically altering specific formulations to allow changes in dosage, route of administration and time course of effects, according to researcher Edward Cone, a toxicologist at ConeChem Research in Maryland and a consultant to the pharmaceutical industry. I just touched the tip of the iceberg in my review, said Cone. Nothing parallels this phenomenon. The amount of information now available is staggering. Cone s study was published in the June 2006 (Drug Formulation and Abuse Liability) issue of the journal Drug and Alcohol Dependence. Counselor Training in Denver and Colorado Springs Behavioral Health Services Training Center Counselor Certification Training in Certified Addiction Counselor (CAC) I, II, III, ADAD approved Domestic Violence Counselor (Provider), courses for approval National Gambling Counselor Certification, NGCC approved DORA - Jurisprudence requirement courses Treating Sexual Perpetrators and Corrections courses All classes are NAADAC and NBCC approved for Behavioral Health Professionals and Nurses For information / Brochure / Registration / On-line classes Call (303) or see 7

8 SACC Society of Addiction Counselors of Colorado P.O. Box 9384 Denver, CO Phone: (303) PRSRT STD U S POSTAGE PAID DENVER, CO PERMIT NO Sign a New Member Today sacc Newsletter Advertisement Rates Business Card size $50.00 $200 for 4 issues 1/4 page$80 $320 for 4 issues 1/2 page$115 $460 for 4 issues Full page $165 $660 for 4 issues 20 % discount for sacc members Newsletter Dates Spring Edition sent out by May 15 th Submission deadline April 30 th Summer Edition sent out by August 15 th Submission deadline July 31 st Fall Edition sent out by November 15 th Submission deadline October 31 st Winter Edition sent out by February 15 th Submission deadline January 31 st Newsletter Submissions to sacc Board of Directors President Jean Armour, M.A., LPC, BSN, CAC III President Elect Scott DeMuro, Ph.D., LAC, MAC Past President Laurence Freedom, M.Ed., CAC III, LPC Secretary Jonna Henkel CAC II Treasurer Harold W. Aarons, M.Ed., CAC II David Cherry Pat Fleck, MA, LMFT, ACS Lisa Gawenus, B.S., CAC III Anne Hatcher, Ed.D., CACIII, NCACII Levon Hupfer-Deter, CAC III Phyllis Kirk, LPC, CAC II Members At Large Doris Kruse, CAC III, NCACII Franklin Lisnow, MEd, MAC Bill Lundgren LPC, CAC III Sue Maclaren, LPC, LAC (Newsletter Coordinator) Brad Osborn CAC II Joe Serrone Regional Representatives Barbara Kinkelaar, LPC, LAC - Western Slope David Petersen, MSW, MHA - Southern CO

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