All across the country, opioid addiction continues to ravage our communities. Millions of people are struggling through opioid addictions at this very moment, and although they want to find help, the help they need is not within their reach. Because there is still a harsh stigma regarding opioid addiction, many people fail to view it as a disease, viewing it instead as a moral failing and preventing the doctor-led healing that these people need. If we are going to chart a path out of this crisis, we need to start thinking about opioid addiction differently and understanding it correctly. This is what we at Levara are all about.
Who We Are
A nonprofit health organization, Levara is committed to serving people who are going through addiction. We offer our services need-blind, helping people whether they can pay us or not. An integrated primary care provider, we focus on medication assisted treatment (MAT) in order to make a significant, long-lasting impact on our patients, combating opioid addiction as a disease. The numbers bear out a truth that we know well: through MAT, it is possible to dramatically reduce the incidence of relapse, cutting cravings to the extent that people need to win their fight with addiction once and for all.
What Is MAT?
Unbeknownst to most people, there are several FDA-approved drugs that are useful for blocking the effects of opioids and in turn helping people to beat their addiction. MAT involves a regimen of such drugs in conjunction with behavioral therapy in an outpatient setting, guiding patients toward results that last. Levara offers group therapy, family therapy, and individual therapy to patients, addressing the range of issues that contribute to and exacerbate opioid addiction. Through MAT, patients do not need to perceive their opioid addiction disorder as character-defining, instead perceiving it as the disease that it is.
Our "Whole Patient" Approach
The way that we see it, MAT is the right way to treat opioid addiction. Because medication and counseling on their own often fail to lead to long-term results, we need more. Our "whole patient" approach integrates medication and behavioral counseling. This approach is ultimately more effective, and because our mission is to change lives through the care that we offer, this is the approach that we champion.
What We Need & What You Get
Right now, we are turning to you, GoFundMe, for help raising the funds that we need to continue to operate and accept all the patients who need our help. Although we accept commercial insurance such as Blue Cross Blue Shield, Aetna, and Medicaid, insurers will reimburse only a fraction of the cost of therapy. Many of our patients have no way of paying this bill, and we are not going to turn anyone away. Currently, our goal is to raise $30,000. A foundation has generously offered to match all contributions so now is the time to raise as much as we can. If we can raise the full $30,000, that would put us on a solid path for the coming year. We will use these funds to open three new offices, hire additional staff, and raise awareness of our initiatives. To show our appreciation for all your contributions, we will send out regular updates on what we are doing at Levara. This way, you can feel involved in our efforts and receive reminders of your compassion and your positive impact on others.
Risks & Challenges
Because Levara is already operational, there is no risk inherent to what we have planned. The foundation that has promised to match the contributions that we raise has shown a tremendous deal of faith in us, and we are not going to let them down in any way. You can count on us to continue to work hard toward our goals and to continue to serve our patients effectively. Whatever challenges do arise, we will solve them.
Other Ways You Can Help
In addition to making a monetary contribution to this campaign, you can support Levara by sharing this campaign with everyone in your life. We all know someone whom opioid addiction has affected directly or indirectly. Together, we can put an end to this crisis and shift public perception of it so that people who are ill can get the treatment that they need. Go ahead and spread the word far and wide, post a link to the campaign on any social media platforms you use. We appreciate all your support, both monetary and non-monetary, and we thank you for your time.
Irv Schwarzbaum Chairman - Levara Health Inc.