So far this year, CleanSlate Centers has opened several new facilities across five states, offering medication-assisted treatment programs. Additionally, the organization will enter Florida next week and Wisconsin later in the summer, resulting in a total of about 30 centers in eight states.
The rapid growth is driven by an emerging demand for medication-assisted treatment services as well as market opportunity, according to CEO Greg Marotta. He says CleanSlate—backed by growth-equity fund Apple Tree Partners—is primarily expanding its portfolio through new center openings for now, but mergers and acquisitions could be possible, too.
“We have interest in and have had a number of discussions with providers who are looking to grow but maybe don’t have the capital to invest properly in the infrastructure to support that,” Marotta tells Behavioral Healthcare Executive.
Likewise, the organization would consider strategic partnerships with hospital systems or multisite practices to provide extended or step-down services, he says. CleanSlate aims to fit within the existing treatment ecosystem in each market rather than to supplant services in the recovery community.
Currently, the programs treat 6,100 active patients in 25 centers, with the majority concentrated in 14 established locations. Since its launch in 2009, CleanSlate has treated 19,000 patients, Marotta says.
According to the Department of Justice, there were 32,421 waivered prescribers in the United States with the training and the authority to prescribe buprenorphine as of November 2016. New federal regulations have opened the door for more use of buprenorphine, allowing for larger patient loads and permitting more categories of clinical professionals to qualify for waivers.
With its ongoing program expansion, CleanSlate’s growth strategy has included recruitment and training of clinical professionals to obtain waivers as well as the necessary regulatory-compliance and administrative support to maintain their prescribing status. Prescribers use EHR systems and e-prescribing channels.
“We recruit local providers in the markets we’re in and train them and help them receive their X-waiver from the Drug Enforcement Agency and SAMHSA so they can prescribe,” Marotta says.
The organization includes more than 220 prescribers, and 80% of them were trained through CleanSlate, he says. In fact, now that regulations allow nurse practitioners and physicians assistants in many states to complete training and gain the authority to prescribe buprenorphine, additional professionals are taking on the prescribing role within the organization.
“We had our first midlevel begin prescribing in Indiana two weeks ago, and everything went smoothly,” Marotta says.