Photo courtesy: 855-HOW-TO-QUIT-(OPIOIDS)
Photo courtesy: 855-HOW-TO-QUIT-(OPIOIDS)

855-HOW-TO-QUIT-(OPIOIDS): The Newest Approach in Helping Individuals Overcome Opioids Use

Traditional treatment for those using opioids often involves a combination of medication-assisted treatment (MAT), counseling, and support groups. MAT utilizes medications like methadone, buprenorphine, or naltrexone to reduce cravings and withdrawal symptoms, thus maintaining a stable state that discourages opioid use. Counseling and support groups aim to address the psychological aspects of addiction, helping individuals understand and modify their behaviors. 

Many individuals still struggle to maintain long-term recovery despite these approaches. The traditional treatment paths can be rigid and often don’t adequately address the personalized needs of each individual or the immediate crises that can lead to relapse. 

Serviceplan Innovation created the “855-HOW-TO-QUIT-(OPIOIDS)” helpline after recognizing the limitations of traditional methods. This represents a modern approach tailored to fit the immediate and varied needs of those battling opioid use disorder. 

The coalition of non-government organizations, healthcare professionals, activists, and professional media partners behind the project aims to tackle the opioid epidemic through this newest helpline. The groups plan to do so via a modern approach and help wider communities and struggling individuals. 

The Big Idea

The “855-HOW-TO-QUIT-(OPIOIDS)” helpline is a toll-free service that provides immediate support and advice using a uniquely simple and memorable method: transforming familiar pill imprint codes into phone extensions. It is staffed by 30 advisors, each representing one of the 30 most commonly misused opioid pills, enhancing the relevance and personalization of the support provided. 

Photo courtesy: 855-HOW-TO-QUIT-(OPIOIDS)

This method makes the helpline for opioid recovery easy to remember while ensuring that support is always just a phone call away. It perfectly caters to the modern expectation for solutions that are quick, accessible, and user-friendly. 

Michel May, founder of Anzen Health and one of the project’s supporters, notes that the helpline ensures that when the struggle hits, callers have a reliable person they can speak and listen to at any time of the day. They will never face the challenge alone. It breaks the cycle of traditionally hard-to-reach help but opens an easier way to overcome the grip of opioid addiction.

Striking the Right Balance

The “855-HOW-TO-QUIT-(OPIOIDS)” helpline directly connects callers to 30 stories, live when available and recorded for all other times, each reflecting the diverse experiences of individuals affected by opioid use disorder.

The advisors share personal narratives about their own encounters with one of the 30 most commonly abused opioid pills—from initial addiction to successful recovery. 

The call also includes sharing vital medical insights and making each conversation informative and supportive. Additionally, the helpline provides detailed information on each type of pill, direct access to 988 for emergencies, and connections to the SAMHSA National Helpline for comprehensive treatment options. 

This multifaceted approach enhances the helpline’s reliability and dependability and positions it as a unique and essential resource backed by real people committed and equipped to make a difference in the lives of those they help.

“It is a balance of technology and human touch. We maximize the power of technology to connect with the human heart to listen and guide,” Michel May mentions.

A Nationwide Collaboration

Every six minutes, someone in the U.S. succumbs to opioids, a stark reminder of the widespread impact of this crisis. The 855-HOW-TO-QUIT-(OPIOIDS) campaign aims to reach as many affected individuals as possible because of the urgent need for widespread awareness and intervention.

Photo courtesy: 855-HOW-TO-QUIT-(OPIOIDS)

This national campaign was meticulously planned to maximize visibility, with strategic placements in key locations, including pharmacies and known hotspots for opioid use. The campaign’s innovative approach extended to billboards, print and digital ads, and other out-of-home media (OOH); all managed pro bono by the leading OOH media company, Talon.

The campaign significantly enhanced its reach and impact, ensuring its message resonated with a broad audience supported by several organizations, such as We Are Those People, PAIN, Anzen Health, and others.

“We aim for this campaign to usher in a new era in addressing opioid use and recovery,” Alex Schill, Global CCO of Serviceplan Group, shares. “We are eager to see how this initiative reaches its target audience and engages other key stakeholders. Together, we hope to inspire more innovative approaches to tackling this and other health crises.” 

For more information about 855-HOW-TO-QUIT-(OPIOIDS), please visit their website

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