“I feel that I needed this to begin my sobriety and it helped me grow and be accountable for my actions. It wasn't easy being in this program but I wanted to be sober and have my career. My spiritual journey continues.”
~ Client Testimonial
HEALTH PROFESSIONALS ASSISTANCE PROGRAM
We expect a lot from our health professionals. They have demanding positions, and when making decisions that will affect the health and well-being of their patients, there is no room for error. However, they are human, and can succumb to stress and burnout, emotional or mental illness, and behavioral issues and addictions like everyone else. The difference is, healthcare occupations are considered “safety sensitive” positions and if health professionals are experiencing potentially impairing illnesses, it may directly impact the safety of the patients they care for.
Health professionals who are experiencing mental health or substance use illnesses are individuals who have dedicated their lives to helping others and are now in need of care themselves. If left untreated or if under-treated, these illnesses can place even the finest clinicians and their patients at risk. SD regulatory boards acknowledge a primary concern for public safety and offer a Health Professionals Assistance Program (HPAP). They believe a vibrant assistance program will enhance public safety by reducing risk associated with potentially impairing health conditions. HPAP operates in accordance with SDCL 36-2A. Since 1996, HPAP has assisted with the recovery and safe return to practice for hundreds of SD healthcare professionals.
HPAP is a professionally staffed, statewide program. Midwest Health Management Services (MWHMS) holds agreements with the SD Boards of Nursing, Dentistry, Pharmacy, Optometry, Nursing Facility Administrators, and Addiction & Prevention Professionals to operate HPAP.
Regulated health professionals who hold, or are eligible to hold SD licensure as a health professional may be eligible to participate. Most referrals come from employers and licensing boards; however, in an effort to encourage early intervention and improved outcomes, HPAP encourages self-referrals, referrals from families or peers, or referrals from medical or treatment agencies. If you call HPAP about a colleague, your contact will be held in the strictest confidence. We can serve as a resource to help determine appropriate next steps.
In addition to voluntary participation, HPAP also provides a track for mandatory disciplinary participation when a health professional's mental health or substance use disorder requires recovery management and/or practice limitations.
What are the advantages of managed recovery with HPAP?
Access to early intervention, which increases the likelihood of successful treatment and decreases the likelihood of clinical skills being compromised.
Assistance with obtaining the appropriate level of treatment and continued care.
Enhanced public safety by reducing the risk associated with potentially impairing health conditions.
Access to qualified licensed professionals who provide case management with compassion and dignity.
Intervention and recovery management that can save a career, a reputation, or even a life.
Access to education on health and wellbeing for professionals in safety sensitive positions