Founded in 1969, Lifeline is an outpatient opioid treatment program of SSTAR. It assists persons whose lives are disrupted or at serious risk of disruption through the use, abuse, or dependency of drugs. It provides outpatient methadone services for opioid dependency. (Opioid include heroin, morphine, Percodan, and Oxycontin).

The Lifeline philosophy

  • Lifeline places priority on meeting the needs of persons whose self-stated goals include abstinence from all substances, including alcohol.
  • Recovery from chemical dependency is a process that encompasses different states in a person’s life and does not end with the achievement of abstinence alone. Therefore, Lifeline assists every client in formulating and implementing a plan of transforming the dependent individual’s life from what it is, to what it needs to become.
  • Lifeline accepts the self-help philosophy of Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous, while maintaining its clearly separate role, identity, and counseling/ supportive techniques.

Personal goals

Program staff work to help each individual client achieve:

  • Abstinence from all substances
  • A structured daily routine
  • Inclusion within a drug-free social network
  • No illegal activity and arrests
  • Accepting and addressing financial obligations
  • Identification of short-term and long-term goals for personal growth

What happens to a client of lifeline?

Lifeline’s staff meets individually with each client to discuss specific needs and determine the appropriate service to meet those needs (a process called an intake). Once the intake has been completed, clients either are admitted to the methadone treatment program or referred for outpatient counseling services. If a client needs a service that Lifeline does not offer, staff will refer to the appropriate program that offers the needed service.

Services provided by Lifeline

Services include:

  • Personalized treatment planning
  • Medical assessment
  • Individual counseling
  • Methadone administration
  • Weekly relapse-prevention and management groups
  • Couple/family counseling
  • Specialized group therapy (parenting group, trauma, women’s group)
  • Regular drug screening to assure compliance with program requirements
  • Case management to coordinate access and treatment/participation for other medical or community services as identified in the individualized treatment plan to facilitate recovery
  • Nutrition/health education

What is methadone treatment?

Methadone is an oral, medically prescribed medication that halts the cycle of “highs” and periods of “feeling sick” that is typical for those addicted to opioid narcotics. A methadone treatment program provides health, social, and rehabilitative services and methadone to relieve withdrawal symptoms, reduce opiate craving, and allow the body to normalize.

About our staff

Lifeline is staffed by a full-time program director; specially trained, masters-prepared clinicians; nursing staff; medical director; secretary and billing coordinator.

Lifeline’s hours of operation

  • Lifeline is open seven days a week for dosing. Lifeline’s main office is open:
  • Monday-Friday 6:30am to 5:00pm
  • Potential clients can sign up Monday-Friday 10am-12pm and 1pm-3pm

How do I pay for Lifeline services?

Funded in part by a Massachusetts Department of Public Health Substance Abuse Grant, Mass Health (Medicaid), and Medicare, Lifeline is available to all Massachusetts residents, regardless of ability to pay. Other health plans also cover the service with prior authorization. The Lifeline staff works individually with each client to determine payment.

Lifeline services are confidential.

Each client’s privacy is protected as required by both the law (Federal 42CFR Part II) and hospital policy. This protection is extended to minors and adults and is not easily waived, even with a court subpoena. Information about clients and their treatment at Lifeline is confidential and, with very few exceptions, is not released without the client’s written authorization. Exceptions include information pertaining to the Massachusetts Child Abuse Reporting Statute or life-threatening emergency situations. Even if treatment is ordered by a court, no law enforcement agency has routine access to information without the client’s written permission.

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