The Houston Recovery Initiative is an effort to work toward a recovery-oriented system of care (ROSC) for those who are affected by alcoholism and addiction. We create opportunities to collaborate with agencies across Houston, working together to aid those in recovery.

The goal of the Houston Recovery Initiative is to implement a ROSC model for Houston by:

  • Increasing access to housing
  • Building a stronger relationship with mutual aid resources, including the 12-step community
  • Establishing Recovery Community Centers
  • Educating the community on best practices for treatment and the Chronic Care Model
  • Developing and implementing a ROSC model for adolescents with substance use disorders

What is a ROSC?

This initiative is based on the recognition that addiction is a chronic health disorder, similar in many ways to other chronic health conditions such as diabetes or hypertension which are usually disorders of life-long duration.

Chronic health disorders sometimes require treatment for acute symptoms to resolve an immediate crisis. However, this treatment does not cure the disorder. Following the crisis, and before discharge, patients are educated about how to maintain their recovery. This requires life-long attention to health and wellness practices in order to achieve and remain symptom-free.  Failure to maintain diet and health regimens, for example, can result in recurrence of life-threatening symptoms.

Likewise, achieving and maintaining recovery from alcoholism and addiction may also require occasional treatment for acute problems, but more importantly, it requires lifelong work to maintain health and wellness in all areas of life, including peer and family social support for recovery.

Support for long-term recovery is the emphasis of this initiative. It is a paradigm shift which moves beyond thinking of treatment as the cure for addiction; treatment may help people start the process of recovery, but the work of recovery is a broader and longer-term commitment. This shift requires changes in the way we think about the role of treatment, the importance of linkages with other community service agencies, and the contributions that can be made by peers-in- recovery as recovery coaches.

Prevention and treatment providers, health and human service agencies, criminal justice and law enforcement, consumers, and other key stakeholders in the Houston community have been meeting to develop plans to transform our existing services and systems to make them more recovery-friendly. Our vision is that our systems will be geared toward support of long term recovery instead of merely being focused on short-term treatment as a “cure.”

The Houston Recovery Initiative is one of many local recovery-oriented systems of care across Texas. A recovery-oriented system of care (ROSC) is a coordinated network of community-based services and supports that is person-centered and builds on the strengths and resilience of individuals, families, and communities to achieve improved health, wellness, and quality of life for those with or at risk of alcohol and drug problems. To find a ROSC in your area, please visit Texas Health and Human Services.