Ayre Counseling Case Study: Remote Monitoring Technology Meets Quality Addiction Treatment

January 16, 2020
Ayre Counseling Case Study with Soberlink

Introduction

Ayre Counseling, LLC is a comprehensive multidisciplinary practice that provides outpatient and intensive outpatient services to individuals struggling with SUD and co-occurring disorders. Ayre Counseling distinguishes itself from other practices by the quality of its service, utilizing proven, evidence-based treatment, and by the quality of care administered by their talented team of clinicians. Ayre prides itself on having the most experienced and well-credentialed staff in the area with over 100 years of combined experience.

Under the leadership of Dr. Kieran Ayre, Ayre Counseling has become the leading provider of Substance Abuse Treatment and Mental Health Services in Northern NJ. Ayre offers flexible treatment options and medical and psychiatry services discreetly, affording both comfort and full confidentiality.

The Challenge

Quality addiction treatment, such as that offered at Ayre Counseling, is an effective way to help individuals with alcohol use disorder (AUD). Like other chronic diseases, AUD and other substance abuse disorders (SUD’s) can be managed with treatment. Unfortunately, this chronic nature also means that relapse is a likely outcome. In fact, SUD-symptom recurrence rates are very similar to those of diabetes, hypertension, and asthma.

Why is Addiction Treatment Evaluated Differently?

One way to improve relapse rates and overall outcomes of AUD treatment is through real-time intervention with alcohol monitoring. Real-time intervention can significantly help individuals reduce drinking behavior. Unfortunately, the methods used for intervention, such as self-reporting, urine lab testing, and office-administered breathalyzers, lack the real-time nature needed to be successful. “An enormous disconnect exists between the point of care when the provider conducts an assessment and offers intervention during the clinical encounter, and the “point of choice,” when the patient decides to drink or not to drink in real-time,” explains an article in the National Center for Biotechnology Information.

Dr. Kieran Ayre agrees with this challenge, explaining that his options for monitoring were “all limited in the ability to create a real-time picture of compliance with treatment goals, whether that be reduced alcohol ingestion or abstinence.”

  • Self-Reporting: With self-reporting, there is evidence that shows how this data can have questionable validity.
  • Urine Lab Testing: With urine tests, the time it takes to visit the lab and get the results back eliminates the real-time nature.
  • Office-Administered Breathalyzers: With office-administered breathalyzers, tests can only be taken while the client is with the treatment provider, limiting the ability to intervene when a relapse may occur out-of-office.

The Solution

To overcome the challenge of finding a real-time intervention solution, Dr. Ayre implemented the use of Soberlink. Soberlink is a real-time alcohol monitoring system that eliminates the issues with all previous monitoring solutions Dr. Ayre had tried in the past:

  • Its facial recognition technology and tamper detection ensures that there are no questions with validity as with self-reporting.
  • Its automatic, real-time results that can be sent directly to the treatment professional via email or text solves the issue of waiting for lab results.
  • The discreet and easy-to-use FDA-cleared device makes it possible for clients to test from anywhere and at any time, helping to prevent relapse without compromising freedom.

At Ayre Counseling, Soberlink has become a staple in both their clinical and evaluation programs. “It has greatly improved the optics on patient compliance with reduced alcohol ingestion or abstinence,” remarks Dr. Ayre. “It has also become a valuable accountability tool for patients who are in the early stages of making changes concerning their alcohol intake.”

Clients at Ayre Counseling are encouraged to remain on Soberlink for at least a year. This amount of time has been found to be helpful to many patients in achieving their sobriety goals. For the clients at Ayre Counseling, feedback has been largely positive regarding the Soberlink system. They have remarked that it gives them transparency and accountability. “We were impressed with the technology, ease of use, and patient’s willingness to utilize the testing through the device,” says Dr. Ayre.

When clients do send a missed or positive test with the Soberlink system, Ayre Counseling has “developed protocols… that allow us to intervene immediately with patients and their families,” says. Dr. Ayre. “Since we can respond in real-time, transgressions, slips, and return to use episodes tend to be briefer and with fewer extreme consequences.”

Results

Ayre Counseling has been using Soberlink for about two years, and with it, has helped many clients reach their recovery goals. Dr. Ayre recalls the story of a 58-year-old professional who achieved one consecutive year of sobriety. “I sat with him and congratulated his achievement, reviewed his recovery journey with him, and explored the gains and wellness that was achieved.  I suggested to him that we might consider stopping his Soberlink testing now that he was sober for one year.  With tears in his eyes, he said, ‘Doc, I don’t want to stop using Soberlink.  It has been so helpful in repairing my relationship with my wife and kids.  I have their trust back.  I have their love once again.  I’m not ready to stop the Soberlink testing.’”

Dr. Ayre continues, “The utilization of a real-time monitoring device such as Soberlink is a game-changer in both the SUD treatment and forensic evaluation field.  It allows for more accurate and timely results while at the same time, providing the opportunity for immediate intervention and follow up.”

Sources
  1. Ayre Counseling: Specialists in Substance Abuse Treatment and Mental Health Counseling
  2. Background for Real-Time Monitoring and Intervention Related to Alcohol Use
  3. Principles of Drug Addiction Treatment: A Research-Based Guide (Third Edition)
  4. Validity and Reliability of Self-Reported Drinking Behavior: Dealing with the Problem of Response Bias.

About the Author

Soberlink supports accountability for sobriety through a comprehensive alcohol monitoring system. Combining a breathalyzer with wireless connectivity, the portable design and technology includes facial recognition, tamper detection and real-time reporting. Soberlink proves sobriety with reliability to foster trust and peace of mind.

Learn More About Soberlink

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