The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, Division of Mental Hygiene seeks full and part time Wellness Advocates for its nonfatal overdose response system called Relay, a new initiative providing 24/7 support to individuals transported to hospital emergency departments (EDs) following a non-fatal opioid overdose.
Position Available: Full Time Wellness Advocate
The full time Wellness Advocate, reporting to the Wellness Advocate Supervisor in the Bureau of Alcohol and Drug Use Care, Prevention and Treatment, has the primary responsibility of visiting patients in the ED to provide immediate support and overdose prevention training following an opioid overdose event and offering ongoing support and linkage to care for a maximum of 90 days after hospital discharge.
Duties and Responsibilities:
The full time Wellness Advocates will be responsible for the following activities, including but not limited to:
• Using their lived experience with substance use to provide support to patients in the ED following a non-fatal overdose, introduce the program to patients and obtain consent for follow up services.
• Conduct overdose risk reduction counseling and prevention trainings with patients and their social networks including naloxone distribution.
• Provide patients with support and assist with linkage to care and community resources for a maximum of 90 days following hospital discharge. Accompany patients to appointments as required.
• Provide information on and offer appropriate referral options to harm reduction programs, medication assisted treatment, and other services as requested.
• Coordinate and monitor the implementation of the program to assigned ED and the referrals to community services.
• Provide technical assistance and train ED staff on program implementation, policies and procedures. Closely collaborates with ED staff and community partnerships on continued integration of Relay.
• Maintain detailed records of patient contacts and follow-up activities. Collect and report program data to evaluate program performance.
A Wellness Advocate possesses first-hand lived experience using substances and is eager to draw from their own personal history in order to provide support through risk reduction counseling, naloxone training, and linkage to care for those experiencing a non-fatal opioid overdose in the Emergency Department. The successful candidate will have familiarity and openness to a range of drug treatment modalities, the principles of harm reduction, and will possess, at a minimum, a bachelor’s degree. This candidate will be a Certified Peer Recovery Advocate (CRPA) or have commensurate experience of at least two years in the human service field. This candidate will also be willing to travel within the five boroughs, have a demonstrated ability to work with culturally diverse populations and have strong communication and organizational skills.