ADAPT supports Airmen through education and treatment

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Rachel Perkinson
  • 23rd Wing Public Affairs

April is National Alcohol Awareness and Stress Awareness Month. The Moody Alcohol and Drug Abuse Treatment Program is here to help Airmen who may succumb to societal pressures or personal struggles with alcohol or substance abuse.

Through education and treatment, ADAPT provides Airmen with ways to cope with stressors and temptations that may lead to negative consequences.

“ADAPT is a Department of the Air Force approach to preventing and treating drug and alcohol abuse amongst our Airmen,” said Capt. Kelly Wails, 23d Medical Group ADAPT program manager. “We use evidence-based treatment and education methods to work with airmen who struggle with substance misuse.”

The program focuses on preventative measures of substance abuse. Additionally, it informs Airmen on ways to make better decisions on how much they drink and how to eliminate the use or the misuse of prescribed drugs.

Through the prevention and treatment of substance abuse, the primary objectives of the ADAPT program are to promote health, readiness and overall wellness. It also focuses on minimizing the consequences that can affect the individual, family and organization. The program also aims to restore function and return members to unrestricted duty.

No two cases are these same. With different levels of severity, steps are taken to ensure that the safety and wellbeing of each Airman is priority.

“Getting help in ADAPT can happen in a few different ways,” Wails said. “First, Airmen can self-refer by coming to the mental health clinic or giving us a call. Second, referrals can be placed by medical personnel who have seen indicators of drug or alcohol problems. Additionally, commanders have the right and responsibility, and are mandated, to refer airmen to ADAPT when substance use or misuse is suspected to be a contributing factor in any misconduct.”

ADAPT also works with their sister programs in Mental Health and Family Advocacy to ensure any coinciding problems or mental health conditions are addressed thoroughly.

“Drug and alcohol abuse, or any addiction, can have a huge impact on Airmen and their families in countless ways,” said Wails. “Anything that negatively impacts Airmen, essentially impacts mission readiness.”
Acting as a cornerstone for furthering responsibilities with relationships and families, ADAPT begins the process of teaching Airmen ways to seek personalized care for themselves.

“I think our program is important to our airmen’s over all wellbeing because this disease affects every aspect of a person’s life,” said Staff Sgt. Cathryn Godwin, 23d Medical Group ADAPT noncommissioned officer in charge. “I know that our program can help those individuals who need the help because I have seen the changes out-patients have made when they are willing to allow us to help them.”

ADAPT professionals understand that most substance abuse problems stem from past or recent trauma, which is why they take different approaches to empower every Airmen.

“We know that often times drug and alcohol misuse is a coping strategy and a symptom of other problems occurring in someone’s life," Wails said. “Working across all support services in a multidisciplinary approach is important.”

Asking for help and receiving care is critical to maintaining mission readiness, and with ADAPT, Airmen can be back on the road to success.

“We are here to help,” Godwin said. “If you need to ask hypotheticals and/or questions please reach out to us and we are happy to answer any questions about our process. Seeking help is not a sign of weakness but a sign of strength.”

For more information contact ADAPT/Mental Health at (229)257-3898.