What is the purpose of the Drug and Alcohol Referral Tool?
The purpose of the Drug and Alcohol Referral Tool is to guide individuals to addiction treatment services, supportive services, and informational resources related to prescription medications, illegal drugs, alcohol, and/or gambling. The tool provides suggestions on local, state, and federal programs that the person may wish to apply for or learn more about. The tool is not intended to tell the person whether they qualify for specific programs, nor to provide a diagnosis. Information entered into the tool is NOT saved, and all responses are anonymous.
What populations and programs does the Drug and Alcohol Referral Tool cover?
The tool is designed for individuals of all ages who are concerned about their use of prescription medications, illegal drugs, alcohol, and/or their gambling behavior. This tool is also designed for friends or relatives to find help for somebody else who they may be concerned about. The tool provides Pennsylvania-specific resources on drug, alcohol, and gambling treatment; mental health services; federal, state, and county benefits for low-income individuals and veterans; transportation services; housing options; legal services; and other information.
Do I have to answer all the questions on the Drug and Alcohol Referral Tool?
No, you may skip any question. However, completing more questions will improve the quality and variety of information you receive at the end of the survey.
When I have completed answering all the questions, the results page provides three boxes of information. What is the difference between the three boxes of information?
The first box contains contact information for programs that may be able to provide, or help you find, addiction treatment services. A phone number and/or website is provided where you can begin the process to find an appropriate level of treatment based on your needs. The second box contains information on supportive services – such as federal, state, and local programs – that may be able to assist special populations (low-income individuals, veterans, the elderly, individuals needing transportation or legal assistance, etc.). The third box contains additional resources that will allow you to do more research on various drug, alcohol, and treatment-related topics.
On the results page, there are several suggestions of organizations that I can contact. How do I determine which I should contact? Can I contact more than one?
The results page presents resources in the order that may be most beneficial to you, based on the way you answered the questions; however, contacting any resource on the list should help you find an appropriate place for treatment or support services. You can also contact the GET HELP NOW hotline at 1-800-662-4357 (HELP) where trained staff can explain which programs or services may be most appropriate to start with.
I see a reference for COMPASS and that I can apply for services through this website – what types of services does COMPASS support?
COMPASS is Pennsylvania’s online application system that allows you to apply for benefits, such as Medical Assistance (Medicaid), the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, or “food stamps”), the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP, for help paying heating bills), subsidized child care, and other programs. The COMPASS website contains more information about how to apply, the services you may apply for, and contact information if you need assistance in filling out the application.
Is there a way I can store or keep the results of the tool?
Yes, you have several options. At the bottom of the results page, you will see three options available that will allow you the opportunity to keep these results for your records. First, you may print out the information. Second, you can have this information stored as a file on your computer. Finally, you can have the results emailed to your personal email account. Please note, the Drug and Alcohol Referral Tool does not store this information, and once you leave the results webpage, you will not be able to get back to the information unless you complete the tool again.
What is opioid use disorder?
Opioid use disorder is a problematic pattern of opioid use, which can lead to significant impairment or distress. Opioids include prescription pain medications (such as codeine, hydrocodone, oxycodone, tramadol, methadone, buprenorphine, and others), synthetic opioids (such as fentanyl), and illicit opioids (such as heroin). People with opioid use disorder may take opioid drugs in larger amounts or over a longer period than intended; spend a lot of time obtaining the drug; experience cravings, tolerance to the drug, or withdrawal symptoms when drug use stops; and/or have difficulty fulfilling obligations at work, school, or home.
Opioid use disorder may still occur when taking prescription medicine under the guidance of a medical professional. This is called overprescribing. If you are concerned about a loved one’s or your own prescription opioid use, the local Single County Authority (SCA) provided with your results can help screen for a potential opioid use disorder. In Pennsylvania, Centers of Excellence (COEs) are specifically designed to help individuals with opioid use disorder; however, any resource provided on the results page should be able to help somebody with opioid use disorder.