Genesis Treatment Services opened in Frederick in March and is an outpatient addiction treatment program that provides medication-assisted treatment with methadone. Suboxone will be available in the near future. It also offers individual, group and family counseling. President Joel Prell spoke with The News-Post about the business.
Why is there a need for these services in Frederick?
There’s an opioid crisis really across the nation, and it’s been that way for several years. We’ve been providing these services in Maryland for 17 years. We have two other locations — one in Baltimore County and one in Carroll County. And when we were looking to open a third location we were doing some research to try to find out where, you know, the services we provide, where would they be needed most, and all the data pointed to Frederick — that there was a very big gap in treatment availability.
What are some of the biggest challenges that people with addiction face especially in areas where they might not have as much access to treatment?
Obviously, you know, the barriers to treatment are location and proximity to where they live. You know, our services we provide are a daily service, so a lot of folks who need help either have to be on a waiting list in other programs because there’s only two other programs currently in Frederick and you know, if there’s a waiting list they can’t get treatment and you know, if they have to go to another facility they may have to drive a very long way and some of them don’t have transportation.
Since you’re relatively new to Frederick, can you tell me what your reception has been like so far?
The reception that we’ve received within the community has been nothing short of amazing. Every agency that we have spoken with has just really welcomed us very warmly to the community. We met with the Frederick city [Board of Aldermen]. We also met with the Frederick County Council before we decided to actually proceed to open the location, and all of them said “we absolutely need your services here” and welcomed us. Frederick Chamber of Commerce was very warm to us and we had a really nice open house. … I think we had about 60 people that showed up. Some of them were just individuals. Some were representing agencies. ... It was a really nice event. That was the ribbon-cutting ceremony we had [in March].
Share one positive experience where these services have made a difference.
I have lots of those. I’ve been doing this for 17 years and the most rewarding thing that happens for me personally is, you know, when I go into the office and there’s some patients in there and they recognize that I’m the owner and they just come to me with tears in their eyes and just thanking me for this program, that it saved their life, you know, it saved their family. They’re able to get back to work and take care of their kids and, you know, back to a normal life. That’s the meaning of success for us since we want to help people overcome this terrible disease and help them get on with their lives and that’s the fruits of our labor.
I noticed that your hours aren’t typical business hours. Can you tell me why?
This is pretty standard in this field with regards to medication-assisted treatment. You know, the patients that come to us, they receive medication daily and a lot of them either have a job or are trying to get back to work and so, you know, it’s difficult for people to function if we were to be open let’s say just in the evenings ... they would have to not have their medication for that day so we open early to give people the ability to get to work.
Is there anything you want to add?
We do accept Maryland Medicaid. We also do have a rate for self pay patients and that’s only $80 a week and ... we’re right on the Golden Mile, there’s a bus line that comes across there and it’s pretty convenient for that. ... And some folks who have, like, private insurance, we don’t accept it but we will assist them in getting reimbursed from their insurance company.