Doctor: Opioid Program Will Build on Pilot Successes

Posted: Updated:
(photo courtesy Community Health Network) (photo courtesy Community Health Network)

A physician at Community Hospital East in Indianapolis says the program announced Monday by Governor Eric Holcomb to curb opioid addiction among expectant mothers and newborn babies will expand upon efforts that have already seen success. Anthony Sanders says the funding from the Indiana Family and Social Services Administration will help grow the program beyond Indy's east side.

The Community Health Network Neonatal Opioid Addiction Project was born out of a pilot program at Community East. Sanders says while a small number of women have successfully completed the program, more needs to be done to address the issue of opioid use disorder in pregnant women and children being born addicted to opioids, also known as Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome. 

In an interview with Inside INdiana Business, Sanders says while the problem of opioid abuse and NAS hasn't necessarily grown, the spotlight on it has gotten wider.

"Because of that and because of programs like what we have and also programs that address addiction in non-pregnant patients in general, the more available that they are and the more attention that this problem receives, the more impact that these programs are going to have," says Sanders. "One of the benefits of the spotlight on the problem is that it's starting to chip away at the stigma of addiction and, in particular, opioid addiction."

Sanders says the program not only provides medication-assisted therapy for mothers, but also group therapy with other moms in similar situations, one-on-one counseling addressing their addiction needs, and assistance with other mental health disorders. 

Sanders says the goal of the program is to eliminate NAS and opioid addiction among mothers, but there is a lot of work to be done before that can happen.

"We are still at the tip of the iceberg to say the least," he says. "We've had 67 women come through our program as of our last count over a year and a half to two years and that's just not enough because I know there are more women out there."

He says he hopes to expand the services offered through the program to other Community Health Network locations in central Indiana.

Sanders says while the problem of opioid abuse and NAS hasn't necessarily grown, the spotlight on it has gotten wider.
Sanders says the program has been going well but there's a lot of work still to do.
  • Perspectives

    • Hope is Not a Plan

      This is sobering. A local business broker in Indianapolis reports nine out of 10 business owners who want to sell are turned away. Of the one in 10 that does make it past the first analysis to sell, over half of those company owners don’t get the sale price they hope for or believe the business is worth. Bottom line, hope is not a plan if you want to sell your business.



Company Name:
Confirm Email:
INside Edge
Morning Briefing
BigWigs & New Gigs
Life Sciences Indiana
Indiana Connections


  • Most Popular Stories

    • Brooke's Candy Refocuses, Will Close Terre Haute Shop

      Dana-based Brooke's Candy Co. says it will close its downtown Terre Haute retail shop June 1. The location opened less than two years ago and is the company's second storefront. In a message on Facebook, Brooke's Candy Co. says the decision will allow it to focus on the Brooke's Naturals line, which includes cookie, brownie, cake and bread mixes. The company calls it a tough decision, saying...

    • Angela Smith Grossman

      DCS Appoints Assistant Deputy Director

      The Indiana Department of Child Services has promoted Angela Smith Grossman to assistant deputy director of field operations, a new position that will focus on enhancing the agency’s foster and collaborative care programs. She has been with DCS for more than 27 years. During her tenure with DCS, Smith Grossman served as a regional manager, local office director and family case manager supervisor.  

    • (photo courtesy of Wilson St. Pierre Funeral Home)

      Chateau Thomas Winery Owner Dies

      The owner and president of Chateau Thomas Winery in Plainfield has died. Charles Thomas, a longtime OB-GYN who practiced for more than 30 years, founded the winery in 1984 along with his wife, Jill. He was 86.

    • Picture Courtesy: Indianapolis Airport Authority

      Indy Airport Among 'World's Best Domestic Airports'

      Travel + Leisure Magazine has named Indianapolis International Airport one of readers' favorite domestic airports in the world. The airport landed the second spot on the magazine’s 2019 World’s Best Awards. .

    • (Provided Photo/Indianapolis Zoo)

      Top Nature Group to Locate Global Center in Indianapolis

      Indianapolis Zoo President Dr. Rob Shumaker has signed an agreement with the world’s largest and most important environmental conservation organization to locate a first of its kind global center in Indianapolis. The agreement with the International Union for the Conservation of Nature creates the first Global Center for Species Survival, which will support an estimated 9,000 experts and scientists around the world and make Indianapolis a hub for...