Responding to the continued public health crisis of opioid addiction in the United States, Behavioral Health Group (BHG), the largest network of Joint Commission-accredited outpatient opioid treatment and recovery centers in the US, today announced their expansion into Minnesota with the acquisition of all four Valhalla Place opioid treatment program locations owned and operated by Meridian Behavioral Health, LLC. Valhalla Place is a premier provider of addiction and mental health services in the Twin Cities. The four locations, jointly employing 185 clinicians, counselors, and staff treat more than 3,000 patients with opioid use disorder. BHG will also acquire the in-house B-Tek Lab co-located in the Woodbury treatment center. B-Tek Lab provides in-house urine drug screens to all Valhalla Place locations.
"Opioid addiction continues to ravage communities across the United States, exacerbated by the current coronavirus pandemic,” said Jay Higham, Chief Executive Officer of BHG. “Our Company’s mission is to expand access to evidence-based treatment in underserved markets across the United States." Minnesota's need is pressing: A Kaiser Family Foundation study found that between 2017 and 2018 more than 109,000 adults in the state reported needing but not receiving treatment for illicit drug use. In April 2021, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) noted that Minnesota's 33 percent increase in drug overdose deaths exceeded the national average over the past 12-month period. Noted Higham, "The time for action is now. Lives are in the balance. Too many individuals, families, and communities need an immediate, proven solution. The opportunity to leverage the demonstrated success generated by the Valhalla Place treatment centers shortens our speed to market at a critical moment in this epidemic." With the expansion into Minnesota, BHG now operates 89 treatment facilities and two labs in 19 states.
According to Ben Nordstrom, MD, PhD, Chief Medical Officer of BHG, “Our plan is to invest in Valhalla Place to build out and implement BHG’s proprietary Integrated Dynamic Care Model that employs the full spectrum of evidence-based medication, behavioral therapy and case management services in an outpatient setting. Our medical mission is to empower our patients to realize their best level of functioning in the community. Expanding the range of treatment services Valhalla currently offers helps us meet the recovery needs of Minnesotans overcoming opioid use disorders.” Most importantly, noted Dr. Nordstrom, BHG’s clinical care model enables recovery care teams to meet each patient where they are as a unique individual, providing dynamic, flexible treatment and ongoing care as their goals, motivations, and needs change on their personal path toward recovery. These medically proven programs demonstrate excellent results as measured by almost all objective criteria – abstinence from drug use, improvements in employment, family dynamics, and general well-being.
Brian Sowada, a tenured employee with Meridian and Valhalla Place, and a thought leader in the MN opioid use disorder field, will continue with BHG in the role of regional director for Minnesota. BHG is excited to support all clinicians, counselors, and staff continuing with BHG post-acquisition, ensuring patients a continuity of care with recovery care team members that they have come to trust.
All BHG Valhalla locations accept Minnesota Health Care Programs (MHCP), the state's Medicaid program, and numerous commercial health plans. BHG is in the process of bringing additional health plan options to BHG Valhalla patients and expand access to affordable recovery care. BHG Valhalla Place also welcomes patients who choose to self-pay, and grant funding may be available for qualified patients.
BHG Valhalla locations include: Valhalla Place Brooklyn Park, 2807 Brookdale Drive N., Brooklyn Park, MN 55444; Valhalla Place Woodbury, 6043 Hudson Road STE 220, Woodbury, MN 55125; Valhalla Place Minneapolis, 3329 University Avenue SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414; and Valhalla Place Brainerd, 2215 S 6TH Street, Brainerd, MN 56401.
Behavioral Health Group (BHG) is the largest network of Joint Commission-accredited outpatient opioid treatment and recovery centers in the U.S., delivering comprehensive, personalized evidence-based medical and behavioral therapies for individuals with opioid use disorder. With 117 locations in twenty-four states, BHG has more than 1,900 employees who serve more than 42,000 patients. To learn more, visit bhgrecovery.com.