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Video – Get Tested for HIV

by James Heller 30. August 2010 11:47

The HIV Services team at Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles produced an informative video that is meant to encourage individuals to be tested for HIV infection.  Statistics are provided during the video that explain why it is important that people who may not even think they are at risk should be tested.  HIV/AIDS treatment has come a long way over the past 20 years, but, left untreated, HIV can still lead to serious illness and death.

See the video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xIN_kOEw3wg

The statistics presented might make you think twice if you believe you are not at risk for HIV infection.  When grouped together in a certain order, they tell a story:

* Over half of all new HIV infections in Los Angeles County are spread by people who have it and don’t know it.
* 69% of women living with AIDS in Los Angeles County got HIV through heterosexual (male with female) contact.
* African-Americans account for 22% of living AIDS cases in Los Angeles County.  
* Latinos make up the largest number of people living with AIDS of any racial and ethnic group in Los Angeles County.

The story goes like this:
When a man doesn’t know he is HIV positive, he may see no reason to avoid risky sexual behavior, needle sharing, or other means of spreading the virus.  He may have just one unprotected sexual encounter with a woman that he meets on a night out, and spread the virus to her.  And if he is sexually active with more than one woman, they are all at risk.  If he is an intravenous drug user, he may share needles with others and spread the virus to his friends.  All without being aware that he is doing so.

We share the African-American and Latino statistics to show that HIV is spreading at a rapid pace in these communities.  The best way to put a stop to the growing problem is for individuals to be tested.

HIV tests are confidential, and are offered at a low cost or free at many locations in Los Angeles County.  To be safe, it is best to be tested for HIV if you do not know the status of recent sexual partners and those with whom you may have shared needles.  It is best to be certain if you are HIV positive or negative.  If you are positive, you need to seek HIV/AIDS treatment so you don’t become ill.  To be blunt, dying from AIDS complications is a slow and painful process.

Tarzana Treatment Centers provides storefront HIV testing in the San Fernando Valley.  If you find that you are HIV positive, you will want to ask about our renowned HIV services.  We staff caring individuals who not only know how to produce a video, but understand what you are dealing with and can provide you all of the services you need.

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides adult and youth alcohol and drug treatment.  We specialize in treatment for mental health and substance use disorders, and have two primary medical care clinics in the San Fernando Valley and Antelope Valley.  If you or a loved one needs help with alcohol dependence, drug addiction, or co-occurring mental health disorders, please call us now at 888-777-8565 or contact us here.

All of our services are also available via video conference or phone as part of our telehealth services.

Southern California Locations for Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Tarzana Treatment Centers has locations all over Southern California in Los Angeles County. Other than our central location in Tarzana, we have facilities in Lancaster in the Antelope Valley, Long Beach, and in Northridge and Reseda in the San Fernando Valley.

Now Providing Online Treatment 24/7

by James Heller 24. June 2010 10:08
Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles has taken pride in our efforts to remain current with health technology advancements.  We have now partnered with MDLiveCare to provide telemedicine services.  This will enable us to offer alcohol and drug treatment, mental health treatment, and medical care via video conference technology, which will allow access to more individuals who need these services.

Please click the link below to read the press release:

MDLiveCare® Health Services, Inc. Announces Agreements in California, Florida and Illinois as It Continues Building National Provider Network and Licensing Relationships


Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides adult and youth alcohol and drug treatment.  We specialize in treatment for mental health and substance use disorders, and have two primary medical care clinics in the San Fernando Valley and Antelope Valley.  If you or a loved one needs help with alcohol dependence, drug addiction, or co-occurring mental health disorders, please call us now at 888-777-8565 or contact us here.

Southern California Locations for Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Tarzana Treatment Centers has locations all over Southern California in Los Angeles County. Other than our central location in Tarzana, we have facilities in Lancaster in the Antelope Valley, Long Beach, and in Northridge and Reseda in the San Fernando Valley.

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Senior Alcohol Abuse - Damaging Effects

by James Heller 12. May 2010 15:07
Senior alcohol abuse is often more difficult to correct than with any other group in America.  By age 60, most individuals are set in their ways and don’t feel the need to change anything.  In fact, many seniors are aware of the risks they face with heavy drinking and continue seemingly without care.  Loved ones may feel helpless, but solutions exist.

About 40% of those over 60 say they drink alcohol, with almost one-third of them admitting to binge drinking and heavy drinking, or alcohol dependence.  These statistics come from a 2007 report at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Office of Applied Studies website.  This means that about 1 in 10 seniors at least binge drink on occasion, which can be very dangerous to their health and that of others.  

Many external changes happen with individuals when they reach age 60.  Retirement is imminent if it has not already occurred, friends begin to move away or pass away, and family members may even suggest a change of residence.  Worst of all, the mind and body begin to show signs of aging, meaning that doctor visits become common and more medications need to be taken.  All of these can be terribly stressful on anyone when they are grouped into a few short years.

Boredom, loneliness, and a sense of powerlessness can each lead anyone to drink alcohol.  Whether it is a time-filler or an escape from negative feelings doesn’t matter.  The end result is that it works and leads to earlier drinking times and less time outside the home.  Senior alcohol abuse may even be a purposeful celebration of the golden years.  The daily party begins with joy, but can quickly turn to injury or a fatality.

This can all be very harmful for seniors due to interactions with medications, a higher risk of falling, and aging major organs.  If alcohol dependence sets in, the effects on the body and brain are more detrimental to seniors than anyone else.  The celebrators, in freedom, usually drive under the influence.  Yet most seniors who abuse alcohol either hide it or justify it, and accept the risks.

Family members who see the alcohol abuse will often accept the behavior as a rite of passage.  Considering the years they have lived, why would a loved one deny what seems well deserved? And if nobody gets hurt, all is okay.  That is, until somebody gets hurt or health problems develop.  Some seniors will stop the behavior at this point, but most will continue to drink heavily and probably more.

There are 2 things that loved ones can do at this point.  The first is to strongly suggest alcohol detox and alcohol treatment.  But most people in their 60’s today will see that as a sign of weakness and refuse, and family members generally won’t force the issue.  Doing so may get the elderly alcoholic into treatment, but he or she will only benefit if self-motivated.  So keep suggesting, with love, and let them make the decision.

Second, you can set boundaries and stick to them.  If they refuse to quit drinking or cut down, suggest accompanying them to the doctor so you can discuss medication interactions.  Let them know you understand that they are not concerned with their own health, but you are concerned with the health of others including yourself and younger members of the family.  It may be hard, but you must be firm, with love, and continue to suggest alcohol treatment.

To the younger generations, seniors who refuse to change these behaviors seem stubborn.  However, like any other individual who engages in alcohol abuse, the bottom line is that they are escaping from emotions.  Instead of arguing and treating them like children, it is best to discuss feelings as much as possible.  Avoid forcing the issue of senior alcohol treatment, and use gentle, loving nudges.

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides alcohol and drug treatment for seniors in a culturally sensitive manner.  We specialize in treatment for mental health and substance use disorders, and have two primary medical care clinics in the San Fernando Valley and Antelope Valley.  If you or a loved one needs help with alcohol dependence, drug addiction, or co-occurring mental health disorders, please call us now at 888-777-8565 or contact us here.

Southern California Locations for Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Tarzana Treatment Centers has locations all over Southern California in Los Angeles County. Other than our central location in Tarzana, we have facilities in Lancaster in the Antelope Valley, Long Beach, and in Northridge and Reseda in the San Fernando Valley.

Primary Health Care in Los Angeles

by James Heller 28. April 2010 13:18
Getting medical health care can be a problem for several reasons.  Cost, location, and lack of insurance are all reasons that individuals postpone or neglect health care.  Some may not want to get treatment from their regular physician for some ailments, as well.  The primary medical care clinics at Tarzana Treatment Centers can help in any of these situations.

We have two medical care clinics located in the San Fernando Valley (Northridge) and in the Antelope Valley (Lancaster).  At each clinic we provide health care services to the communities that are affordable and local.  Whether you need drug testing for your employees, treatment for HIV and other STDs, or injury and illness treatments, we can help.

The care we provide is confidential, caring, and convenient.  Our health care services also ensure a continuum of care to our patients in alcohol and drug treatment.  We also staff medical professionals with years of experience with HIV at our clinics to treat individuals utilizing our HIV services.

For more information, please click the link below to view our flyer:


Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides primary medical care at our clinics.  We specialize in treatment for mental health and substance use disorders.  If you or a loved one needs help with alcohol dependence, drug addiction, or co-occurring mental health disorders, please call us now at 888-777-8565 or contact us here.

Southern California Locations for Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Tarzana Treatment Centers has locations all over Southern California in Los Angeles County. Other than our central location in Tarzana, we have facilities in Lancaster in the Antelope Valley, Long Beach, and in Northridge and Reseda in the San Fernando Valley.

Help for Diabetes and Hypertension in the San Fernando Valley

by James Heller 30. March 2010 10:13
Tarzana Treatment Centers has been awarded a grant that will allow us to provide care for diabetes and hypertension to more patients in the San Fernando Valley.  Our Compassionate Clinical Care Project will serve patients with no access to medical care due to lack of insurance, and those who live below the federal poverty level.

Thanks to this grant from Providence Health and Services/Mother Joseph, we can now provide these services to more individuals who need them.  For more information, please call our primary care clinic at 818 534-1820.

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides primary medical care as part of our commitment to integrated behavioral healthcare, along with alcohol and drug treatment.  If you or a loved one needs help for alcohol dependence or drug addiction, please call us now at 888-777-8565 or contact us here.

Southern California Locations for Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Tarzana Treatment Centers has locations all over Southern California in Los Angeles County. Other than our central location in Tarzana, we have facilities in Lancaster in the Antelope Valley, Long Beach, and in Northridge and Reseda in the San Fernando Valley.

Mental Health and Substance Abuse Parity

by James Heller 26. March 2010 14:18
Individuals who suffer from mental health and substance use disorders need treatment the same as anyone dealing with issues of physical health.  It stands to reason, then, that they should get equal coverage by insurance companies.  HR 3590, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, is now law, and includes language that will now require mental health and substance abuse parity in coverage.

Parity, in simple terms, means to put things on par or to make things equal.  In terms of health care, mental health and substance use disorder treatment is usually not covered on par with medical care.  Examples of inequality include premium, copayment, and deductible rates.  It is hard to argue that the majority of insurance companies have kept up with trends in mental health and substance abuse care to provide proper coverage.

Mental health disorders, alcohol dependence, and drug addiction all affect more individuals than just those who directly suffer.  Family members, friends, employers, and co-workers are all pulled into the world of the sufferer at one time or another.  Treatments for all illnesses in these categories have greatly advanced in the past few decades, and so has the cost.  So when treatment is needed, it is often not sought due to poor coverage that can cause a drain on personal finances.

It is rather unusual for individuals to forego treatment for medical problems when they are insured.  This is especially true for moderate to major physical health problems.  For example, when individuals experience pain in an area where there was none previously, they see a doctor because they want to be sure nothing serious is developing.  But with mental health and substance abuse issues, this is not always the case.

It may be an underlying reason behind the “I can handle it” attitude that is often associated with mental health issues, alcohol abuse, and drug abuse.  While there are inherent symptoms that postpone treatment being sought, the cost factor can be a final deterrent.  Even when sufferers reach the point where the treatment need is acknowledged, the cost reality stops them from getting that treatment immediately.

People are often reluctant to spend money on mental health treatment or alcohol and drug treatment while they can still moderately function in society.  But they are not, by definition, in good health.  In fact, they forego treatment for these problems at the time when it can be most effective; in the early stages.  If mental health and alcohol or drug abuse issues are left untreated, they get worse in most cases.  As the illness gets worse, life problems also mount along with costs to society.

Parity in mental health and substance abuse coverage is helpful to society.  Untreated, those who suffer often are incarcerated for various crimes or are in need of health care.  Incarceration and public health care costs can be greatly reduced with treatment.  With parity, treatment becomes a viable option so fewer sufferers will reach the point where they are incarcerated or need health care.

The Mental Health and Substance Abuse Parity Act was included in the final version of what is now known as Health Care Reform.  This means that insurance companies must now provide equal coverage for mental health and substance abuse treatment as they would for medical care.  Separate deductibles are no longer allowed, and premium rates must be on par.  Our hope from this is for more of those who need treatment to get it before illness-related problems become overwhelming.

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides mental health treatment as part of our commitment to integrated behavioral healthcare.  If you or a loved one needs help with mental health disorders, or alcohol and drug treatment, please call us now at 888-777-8565 or contact us here.

Southern California Locations for Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Tarzana Treatment Centers has locations all over Southern California in Los Angeles County. Other than our central location in Tarzana, we have facilities in Lancaster in the Antelope Valley, Long Beach, and in Northridge and Reseda in the San Fernando Valley.

Patient Safety Quiz

by James Heller 4. March 2010 16:07
Patient safety is a top priority for any health care provider that is accredited by the Joint Commission of Health Care Organizations (JCAHO), as it should be for all of them.  In order to ensure patient safety, all staff members in a facility need to be well informed.  On the other hand, most of the general public is not so well informed of how they can protect themselves in a health care setting.

All staff members at Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles attend required training sessions, live and online, so patient safety is guaranteed to be a priority on all levels of service.  In providing alcohol and drug treatment and integrated behavioral healthcare, we focus on everything from floor coverings to medication interactions.  

Patients should be aware of their own rights and responsibilities as they relate to safety, as well.  While we make it a practice to orient new patients in these areas, there are things that they can do to streamline the admission process by being prepared.

JCAHO has posted a Patient Safety Quiz on its website that is meant to educate the general public.  It is a simple quiz that takes just a few minutes.  After completing the quiz, you will be led to a page with a great deal of information on patient safety.  Follow the link below for the quiz:


Tarzana Treatment Centers is accredited by JCAHO, and prioritizes patient safety in all of our integrated behavioral healthcare services.  If you or a loved one needs help with alcohol dependence or drug addiction, please call us now at 888-777-8565 or contact us here.

Southern California Locations for Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Tarzana Treatment Centers has locations all over Southern California in Los Angeles County. Other than our central location in Tarzana, we have facilities in Lancaster in the Antelope Valley, Long Beach, and in Northridge and Reseda in the San Fernando Valley.

Healthcare Can Save With Alcohol and Drug Treatment

by James Heller 29. July 2009 07:21
While the state of California and the United States governments are looking for ways to reduce health care costs, they should consider alcohol and drug treatment as a helpful measure.  The savings that result from treating alcoholism and drug addiction are significant and wide spread.  When individuals stop alcohol and drug abuse, medical conditions tend to improve or disappear.

Alcohol’s effects on the body, for example, touch every major organ.  So an individual with a heart condition, or even a skin condition, complicates it with continued alcohol abuse or dependence.  When alcohol is removed from the body, it has a better opportunity to heal.  And the alcohol free patient is more likely to follow doctor’s orders.

Drug addiction can cause an array of long-term medical problems.  It also results in many 911 calls and emergency room visits for drug overdoses.  These are costly, as most drug addicts can’t afford to pay for these services.  When drug addiction ceases for individuals, the potential for lower emergency medical costs improves.

Funding alcohol and drug treatment will save these costs.  A study has been posted on www.treatmentgap.org that explains the benefits that it would have on healthcare and the economy.  The section below details findings in California.  The full article gives more examples and offers very convincing data.

-- Begin external content --

California: Savings from Addiction Treatment in Health Care Costs

In 2000 researcher Constance Weisner and others studied the overall medical costs of a group of men at an outpatient Kaiser Permanente addiction treatment program in Sacramento, Calif.  They studied the men 18 months before and after they began an outpatient chemical dependency recovery program.  The cost savings were startling:

  • Total medical costs declined 26 percent.
  • Inpatient health care costs declined 35 percent.
  • Emergency room costs declined 39 percent.

“As in previous studies on medical offset, we observed that a group of adult, chemical dependency (CD) patients have substantially higher utilization of medical services and medical costs prior to entry in treatment when compared to other, non-CD, members who are similar in terms of age, gender and length of enrollment,” the researchers wrote.

“We found that the most significant reductions were observed in inpatient use and likelihood of ER use, but other measures (e.g., inpatient days and number of ER visits) also showed substantial decreases.”

-- Source: http://www.soros.org/initiatives/treatmentgap/articles_publications/publications/paper1_20090714/paper1_20090714.pdf --

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles makes a daily effort to find treatment news articles that we can share with our readers in the alcohol and drug treatment community.  The external content was found among other articles of equal informational and educational quality.

Southern California Locations for Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Tarzana Treatment Centers has locations all over Southern California in Los Angeles County and Orange County. Other than our central location in Tarzana, we have facilities in Lancaster in the Antelope Valley, Long Beach, in Northridge and Reseda in the San Fernando Valley, and in Santa Ana.