SSTAR The Global Leader in Integrated Care


To provide a quality continuum of care and support to all people, especially those affected by addiction, by responding to their mental, physical, emotional and spiritual needs.


Led by our mission, our vision is to participate together as a team in this meaningful work, in a collegial, responsible and financially sound atmosphere.


  • Tradition – To preserve our heritage of providing services tailored to those who are addicted and affected by addiction.
  • Leadership – To set the standard in the community regarding the education, prevention, and treatment of addiction.
  • Teamwork – To design and provide services in a non-judgmental, respectful and culturally competent manner, enabling the greatest level of partnership and self-determination for each consumer.
  • Accountability – To deliver this care so that it is accessible, affordable, effective and efficient.
  • Respect – To care for individuals regardless of their circumstances and to treat consumers and their families as well as our employees and colleagues with dignity and honesty.
  • Learning – To improve our understanding of disease, trauma and social stigma
  • Harm Reduction – To facilitate services appropriate to the circumstances, needs and wishes of the consumer.
  • Expertise – To share our knowledge regarding the provision of health care and social services to those disenfranchised from traditional services. This knowledge base includes the dynamics and treatment of addiction, women’s issues, HIV/AIDS, trauma as well as primary and preventative medical care.

Message from the CEO

Nancy E. Paull

“Every aspect of my life that substance abuse took from me, and gave me guilt and shame for, SSTAR provided me with a suggestion for some kind of service that would help—whether it is counseling or visits to the doctor,” said Elise Kennedy, a former client of various SSTAR programs, currently a volunteer and member of the Board of Directors.

We at SSTAR are proud to have blazed a trail providing integrated behavioral health and primary health care over the past 30 years which may serve as a model for others trying to meet new Federal standards. Provisions outlined in President Obama’s Affordable Health Care Act draw attention to things we have already learned—that people who suffer from mental health or addiction issues are more likely to suffer physical ailments and illnesses, and die at a younger age than the general population. The Affordable Health Care Act also recognizes that people treated for these issues, have a better shot at staying healthy if they are provided with specific options for primary care.

Though this is a new paradigm for the Federal Government, we have had our feet planted firmly in both fields for years. Of course our journey—like all great journeys—began with baby steps. SSTAR began in the late 1970s as “the Center for Alcohol Problems—a fledgling alcohol detoxification and treatment program. Our facility subsequently went through various incarnations—adding a mental health clinic and services for women who had experienced trauma.

We truly began our foray into providing integrative services in the mid 1990’s, as a response to the HIV/AIDS crisis. We ramped up our efforts to provide primary care, launching our first Family Health Care Center. This was begun with a limited internal medical practice and has grown to what it is today: a comprehensive clinic staffed with general practitioners and specialized physicians and nurse practitioners offering services ranging from nutrition counseling to case management which treats over 5000 patients per year. Other programs on site that were created over years to serve the multi faceted needs of our clients include the state’s first HIV walk in testing clinic, our Intensive Outpatient Program and our Ambulatory Behavioral Health Facility.

Our doctors, counselors and case managers knew how important it is to treat the whole person, long before words like holistic became part of our collective dialogue. We recognize that all health conditions are intertwined. For example, someone with depression might not be eating well and may be guided to exercise. Someone with substance use issues may have shared needles or had unprotected sex and may be interested in getting an HIV/AIDS test. A person diagnosed with a chronic illness may benefit from counseling. As the norm in health care across the country has been compartmentalizing problems and specialties, it is easy to lose site of the whole person. Yet, it shouldn’t be.

For years, we have offered an approach to care which we have dubbed “one stop shopping” which allows patients to learn about various options they have for their health—many of which they may not have previously considered. Elise Kennedy for example was using drugs for 23 years, and had been in and out of various programs before she detoxed and started using SSTAR’s intensive outpatient program. She subsequently utilized counseling services; but also connected with our primary care physicians to help her manage her Hepatitis C; and our nutritionist to teach her to eat right again, to lose weight and to stop smoking.

“The best part about SSTAR is that they offer you peace of mind. There are so many options, and they provide you with all the information and offer suggestions. You aren’t a number, you are a person. Once you are with SSTAR, there you are. They don’t ship you off anywhere. You can get everything you need on site. You never have to worry that your needs wont be met, no matter what they are,” Kennedy said.

In addition to giving our clients peace of mind; this way of working enables our physicians to treat patients with a wide range of problems. In the community when physicians encounter patients dealing with substance use issues, they generally find it difficult to develop a plan of action because they have not been trained what to do. Our physicians treat clients with substance use or other behavioral health issues on a daily basis. Thus, they learn a wide range of skills, and are able to treat a wide range of patients.

Of course, we know there is always room for expansion and improvement. We recognize that just as society is in a constant state of flux, people’s needs change, and health care should never be static. Accordingly, we are constantly seeking to improve ourselves. We draw on the lessons we have learned about integrative care, to take things to the next level. Accordingly, last spring we opened a cutting edge Methadone clinic integrating primary medical care, behavioral health, HIV testing and counseling, Hepatitis C testing, case management for chronic illness, methadone treatment and substance use counseling for clients in our City’s South End. This is the first integrated primary, behavioral and methadone clinic in Massachusetts.

We've received a grant from SAMSHA to improve the physical health of patients with serious mental illness who have or are at risk for co-occurring primary conditions and chronic diseases. This grant called the HIP will allow us to integrate the physical and behavioral health care of clients on a larger scale. It will also allow people with substance use disorders to access primary care doctors, who can keep abreast on a spectrum of issues regarding clients’ health. This grant will help us continue to learn how integrative behavioral and primary health services relate to each other, and to develop best practices to serve the community.

SSTAR has always recognized the value of learning by doing. With each new program we are fortunate enough to be able to include in our facility; we are able to gauge what works and what doesn’t. These practices are influenced by both our clients’ and staff needs and feedback.

When in doubt, we fall back on lessons learned throughout our history. The ground at our facility was primed a long time ago to integrate clients’ physical and behavioral health needs. As always, we are proud to be one step ahead of the curve



Over the past two decades, research programs funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) have produced dramatic advances in our understanding of drug abuse and addiction. These new advances have led to the development of an array of new treatments and evidence-based therapies. However, the efficacy of these therapies for drug addiction has been demonstrated primarily in specialized research settings, with somewhat restricted patient populations. In order to fulfill NIDA’s total mission, advances achieved in drug abuse research centers must reach patients in the community-based settings where most treatment is provided.

Beginning in 2000, in an effort to enhance the delivery of scientifically based treatments to drug abuse patients, NIDA established the National Drug Abuse Treatment Clinical Trials Network (CTN). The CTN is at the cutting-edge of improving the quality of drug treatment in the United States by introducing scientifically proven treatments in community-based treatment programs. It has enabled rapid, concurrent testing of a wide range of promising behavioral therapies, medications, and their combined use across a range of populations, treatment settings, and community environments. Along with the CTN studies, SSTAR is also involved in pharmaceutical research studies, which allow us to be on the forefront of revolutionary drug treatment options.

Clinical Trials NetworkEarly in the CTN development, SSTAR was invited to partner with Mclean Hospital of Harvard University and four other community treatment programs (CTPs) across New England to form what is known as the Northern New England Node. SSTAR is currently involved in three clinical trials, and has completed five others to date. These programs not only afford us the professional and intellectual fulfillment of working with the nation’s best academic researchers, but also allow us to provide no cost, cutting-edge treatment to our patients. If you are interested in learning more about research at SSTAR, please email us at: research@sstar.org. You can also click the tabs on the left to find out more about the ongoing research studies here at SSTAR.

Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment Research Articles


Buprenorphine Implant


SSTAR had the opportunity to be a part of the research leading up to the FDA approval of a Buprenorphine Implant. Dr. Genie Bailey was the Principal Investigator here at SSTAR and spearheaded the project in our Research Department at SSTAR. She was instrumental in getting this approved.

Our own Dr. Carter is an experienced trained implanter and also a trainer for the Probuphine Implants. This medication lasts for 6 months!

Research Projects at SSTAR



This is a (National Institute of Health) NIH study working with Butler Hospital to evaluate the effectiveness of linking individuals entering detox and seeking Buprenorphine to the outpatient buprenorphine clinic. This study recruits from SSTAR Inpatient Programs.



This study is Funded by the National Institute of Drug Abuse. Observational study looking at outcomes of opioid use disorder for patients who discharge from Inpatient or Residential (Step-Down) into the community.



Thank you to everyone who helped to make this study a success..

Funded by the (National Institute on Drug Abuse) NIDA to compare the effectiveness of Vivitrol (XR-NTX) to Suboxone(buprenorphine/naloxone) to prevent opioid use and addiction. Participants who are currently abusing opiates are recruited from SSTAR inpatient programs.

This study is Funded by the National Institute of Drug Abuse. Observational study looking at outcomes of opioid use disorder for patients who discharge from Inpatient or Residential (Step-Down) into the community.

SSTAR had the opportunity to be a part of the research leading up to the FDA approval of a Buprenorphine Implant. Dr. Genie Bailey was the Principal Investigator here at SSTAR and spearheaded the project in our Research Department at SSTAR. She was instrumental in getting this approved.

HS-11-421 (Injectable Buprenorphine Study)


This Braeburn Pharmaceuticals study is testing the safety and efficacy of the investigational product CAM2038, which is a long-acting, injectable formulation of buprenorphine. Participants who qualify for this outpatient study will be given BOTH the shot and tablet forms of buprenorphine, one of which is inactive.

These injectable buprenorphine studies at SSTAR are looking for individuals interested in “Suboxone” treatment of opiate addiction. Insurance not needed!

If you, or someone you know, may be interested in being involved in this research study contact Michelle Rapoza.

Contact Us:


Open Access Center

Making it easier for you to get the treatment you need, when you need it.

Access Center Hours

Monday - Friday

7:30am - 11:30am

Contact the Access Center


What if you needed help now and were told there was a two-week wait for an appointment? You probably wouldn’t feel that your needs are viewed as important or that the agency has your best interest at the center of their concerns.

Perhaps your needs are multiple, but you’re not sure what’s the best course of treatment? Our new Open Access Center will help you decide the best way to get your concerns addressed… immediately.

Inpatient, outpatient, methadone, or medication needs, SSTAR’s compassionate, professional staff will provide you with the proper assessment and treatment plan – on the spot – that puts you at the center and supports your efforts to live a healthy lifestyle.

No appointments necessary. Just walk-in. This gives you the ultimate in control and accountability for your health. Our group driven model provides you with the flexibility to choose the path that best suits you in achieving your treatment goals, and at the times that are most convenient.

But what about individual counseling, I may want to speak with someone privately? Counselors are still available. You’ll get to know our treatment team through the groups you attend. This will give you more options to meet individually with an available counselor and at the time of your choosing

Look at our NEW GROUPS!

Tips and Tools for Emotional Wellbeing

This group will help you develop skills to live a healthier emotional life. Topics to be covered include: how to change negative thoughts behaviors and self-talk, manage anxiety, triggers and cravings, improve communication and relationships, and letting the past stay in the past. We will welcome any other topics that you may want to cover.

SSTAR Opioid Triage Center

"There is Hope"

The Triage Center at SSTAR is a new BSAS funded pilot initiative created in response to recommendations by the Governor’s Opioid Working Group to combat the Opioid epidemic in Massachusetts. SSTAR’s Triage Center provides walk-in medical assessment, addiction assessment, triage, and facilitated referrals to inpatient and outpatient addiction treatment. Our interdisciplinary service team is available during all hours of operation in order to ensure timely access to treatment services. Additionally, Recovery Coaches provide support and coordination throughout the full continuum of treatment.

Aligning with the recommendations of the Governor’s Opioid Working Group, the Triage Centers’ goals are to improve immediate access to opioid and other substance use disorder treatment services, reduce unnecessary use of emergency care system, and reduce health disparities among those with substance use disorders. Additionally, our aim is to increase education, training, and access to naloxone for overdose prevention.


Project Aware HIV/AIDS Services


Project Aware has been a leader in providing innovative services to people battling HIV/AIDS in the greater Fall River community since 1989.

Our integrated medical case management program has led the way in providing quality case management for those living with HIV/AIDS while ensuring the greatest utilization of resources.

Our Prevention and Integrated Counseling, Screening, and Referral (PICSR-T) site offers comprehensive services addressing an individual’s risk for HIV, viral hepatitis and sexually transmitted infections(STI) along with STI treatment and referral to Partner Services.

Project Aware has spearheaded initiatives on Harm Reduction, No Wrong Door, Motivational Interviewing and Treatment Readiness Case Management.

Contact Us:


Women’s Center

The Women’s Center provides individual and group therapy, and legal advocacy, including assistance with pro se documents, safety assessments, personalized safety plans and information regarding 209A’s (restraining orders) as well as 258E (Harassment Orders). Our Domestic Violence Specialist is also able to assist with information and lawyer referrals, and advocacy with Department of Transitional Assistance and The Department of Children and Families. The Women’s Center employs two SAFEPLAN Advocates who are located in both the Fall River District Court and the Probate and Family Court. SAFEPLAN Advocates assist with the filing of 209A’s and 258E. A Civilian Police Advocate, housed in the Fall River Police Department, is the liaison between victims of domestic violence and the Police Department. The advocate provides safety planning, crisis intervention, support services and court accompaniment and follow-ups with all client contacts. The advocate also sits on the Bristol County District Attorney’s High Risk Team to assist in identifying serial batterers and holding them accountable.

Our services include:

  • Individual Counseling
  • SAFEPLAN/Court Advocacy
  • Educational Trainings
  • Crisis Intervention
  • Group Counseling
  • Information & Referrals
  • Walk-in Services
  • Speaker’s Bureau
  • Professional Training
  • Free Babysitting while receiving services

Individual counseling is offered. Advocacy and a SAFEPLAN Advocate are available 8:30am to 4:30pm.

All victims of domestic violence are eligible for our services. Most insurance plans are accepted, and services are available free of charge for those individuals who do not have insurance or an ability to pay.

Primary Healthcare

Located at 400 Stanley St in Fall River, the Family HealthCare Center at SSTAR has expanded to a family medicine model, serving all people from infancy through adulthood. Most of our patients have encountered obstacles to care or personal situations that have required supportive services. We provide primary healthcare, preventative medicine, education and supportive services for all individuals. Our specialized services include infectious diseases including the treatment of HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis C. Services are provided regardless of an ability to pay. Bi-lingual staff is available

Hours of Operation

Monday, Wednesday & Friday

8:30am to 4:30pm

Tuesday & Thursday

8:30am to 7:00pm

Contact Us:


Health Center Updates

SSTAR South End Services

Do you live in the South End or Central Fall River? We also have offices located conveniently on 1010 South Main St.

The first integrated Primary, Behavioral, and Methadone Healthcare Clinic in Massachusetts. Located in the South End of Fall River at 1010 South Main Street, South End Services provides the same extraordinary, high quality, cost effective treatment that SSTAR is known for throughout Southern Massachusetts.

Along with our team of warm, caring, and knowledgeable doctors, nurses, and staff, SSTAR’s South End Services provides the very latest in evidenced-based treatment in a primary healthcare and methadone setting.

This satellite location serves everyone, but is especially convenient for families who live in the South End or Central Fall River. South End Services accepts Masshealth, Medicare and most major insurances.

Hours of Operation:

Monday through Friday

8:30am - 4:30pm

Medical Services


  • Family Medicine
  • Primary Health Care
  • Preventative Medicine
  • Pediatric Care
  • Infectious Disease Specialty
  • Chronic Disease Management
  • Health Access
  • Medical Health Case Management
  • Smoking Cessation
  • Interpreter Services
  • On-site Laboratory Services

Project Aware


  • Integrated HIV, Hepatitis C and Sexually Transmitted
  • Infections (STI) counseling, screening, and referral
  • Health Education
  • Risk Reduction Planning
  • HIV Medical Case Management
  • Individualized Service Planning
  • Benefits Coordination

Behavioral Health Services/Lifeline


  • Lifeline Methadone Administration
  • Personal Treatment Planning
  • Medical Assessment
  • Individual Counseling
  • Specialized Group Therapy
  • Case Management and Referral
  • Drug Screening
  • Nutrition/Health Education


Public Health Actions to Prevent Obesity, Diabetes, Heart Disease and Stroke

The City of Fall River was awarded a CDC grant through the MA Department of Public Health along with three other communities, Springfield, Franklin County and Hampshire County. This grant has two components and Fall River chose the SSTAR Family Health Center as their clinical partner.

Component 1 supports environmental and system approaches to promote health, support and reinforce healthful behaviors, and build support for lifestyle improvements. Activities for this component include:

  • Working with retail outlets, hospitals, and food pantries to improve availability of healthy foods.
  • Supporting environment improvements which include the promotion of walking routes, implementing joint use agreements to increase space available for physical activity, and refining and improving policy changes consistent with Complete Streets Certification Program

Component 2 supports interventions within the health care system and encourages linkages between the clinic and community based resources that serve the specific needs of the patients. The specific clinic for this component is SSTAR’s Family Heath Care Center. Activities include:

  • Creating and implementing an e-referral system between the clinical setting and community-based programs such as the YMCA Diabetes Prevention Program
  • Quality improvement efforts to support the identification, management and follow up for patients with hypertension and prediabetes.
  • Raise awareness of undiagnosed high blood pressure and prediabetes and promote risk reduction.
  • Utilize Community Health Workers to increase the effectiveness of the clinical-community linkage by incorporating them as part of the primary health care team to assist patients with behavior change, health education, and connecting to community based resources.
Most health initiatives are focused either in the community or in the clinical area. This grant is exciting as it works to link both systems to improve the health of the city residents.

1422 Walking the Talk

There are many known benefits of walking communities. They lead to diminished crime, increased wellness and more social interaction. They lead to happy and healthier lives, a sense of community, better quality of life and city pride.

Communities that provide walking route access from neighborhoods to schools, grocery stores, shopping, parks and nature trails, make it easy for residents to participate in daily exercise.

SSTAR’s 1422 grant has been hard at work in what’s called the “built environment” to support the development and access to these types of areas as well as outreaching, encouraging, and motivating individuals to lead heathier lives. Indeed, a number of indoor and outdoor walking groups have been created to encourage walking participation with a brand new website to support these efforts at www.walkfallriver.org. For more information about 1422, contact Paula Beaulieu at 508-235-7066.

Look forward to hearing more as we highlight different aspects of this grant in future newsletters!


Inpatient Services Overview

This program is a 30-bed separate gender unit providing 24-hour service for substance abuse and co-occurring disorders.

The Dual Diagnosis Unit, or DDS, is a short term acute care unit, founded in 1999, that focuses on serving individuals with both mental illness and substance abuse.

SSTAR provides inpatient detoxification services for men and women who have a substance abuse problem with alcohol, opiates or benzodiazepines.

BOLD Coalition

Building Our Lives Drug-Free

The BOLD Coalition’s mission is to prevent youth substance use and change societal norms regarding substance use by reducing access, increasing perceptions of risk and harm of substance use, and increasing parental disapproval of youth use. BOLD’s vision is to create a healthy community for the youth of Greater Fall River. Governed by an Advisory Board of 6 members, the BOLD Coalition has representatives from different sectors of the community: youth, parents, business, media, schools, law enforcement, faith and youth serving organizations, civic groups, healthcare professionals and governmental agencies.

The BOLD Coalition welcomes anyone who lives or work in Fall River, Somerset, Swansea and Westport to participate in any of BOLD’s projects. BOLD is a member of Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America (CADCA), the national organization of drug abuse prevention coalitions


SSTARbirth is the only residential substance abuse treatment program in the state of Rhode Island specifically designed for pregnant and postpartum women and their children. Since its inception in 1994, SSTARbirth has served 267 families including 339 children. The program allows for nine to twelve months of treatment and has the capacity for 14 women and 26 children.

SSTARbirth’s multidisciplinary team includes 30 staff members, including a Program Director, Clinical Supervisor, Mental Health Specialist, Substance Abuse Counselors, Case Managers, Parenting Trainer, Vocational Education Specialist, Head Teacher, Daycare Workers, as well as other support staff. In addition, SSTARbirth employs a daytime and evening driver to provide safe and timely transportation to appointments and minimize the disruption to treatment.

The SSTARbirth program provides gender-sensitive services that focus on a woman’s sources of strength and resiliency. Using a holistic approach directed toward helping a woman heal her mind, body and spirit, we rely on the principles and traditions of AA/NA to help women become abstinent. Resting upon a “one-stop shopping” model that addresses the multiple factors in the development of substance abuse problems for women, SSTARbirth provides on site, or coordinates through its program, many of the comprehensive services that recovering women and their children require, including substance abuse treatment, mental health services, “Seeking Safety” trauma curriculum, “Nurturing Families” parenting program, consultation with a child psychologist, vocational education, life skills programming, primary health care, Early Intervention and an on-site licensed daycare.

By providing treatment in a safe and caring environment, SSTARbirth allows clients to strengthen their health, find their recovery and nurture their children.

SSTAR News Articles

Gov. Charlie Baker talks opioid addiction, child abuse during visits to social agencies

"For me, this was an opportunity to come down ... to talk about a whole variety of issues," Baker said.

Gov. Charlie Baker spent the better part of the day in the city of Fall River, meeting with Mayor Jasiel Correia II, and visiting Stanley Street Treatment and Resources and the Children's Advocacy Center of Bristol County.

Paull: SSTAR’s Fall River expansion is not a methadone clinic

“We’ll expand our treatment services,” Paull said. “It will allow us to expand our research. It will allow us to increase primary care.”

SSTAR is proposing a 60 bed facility to be located somewhere in the city that will provide inpatient and outpatient care for drug addicts as well as research into programs and therapies that work for them.

Topaz / NextGen Project Update

What is NextGen?

NextGen Healthcare is an American computer software company that develops and sells electronic health record (EHR) software and practice management systems to the healthcare industry.

What is Topaz?

Topaz Information Solutions, LLC, is an authorized NextGen® Healthcare reseller, specializing in custom developed behavioral health and social services content.

Have Questions?

Contact: jonathan@sstar.org

Information Technology at SSTAR

What is Skype for Business?

Skype for Business is an efficient way to quickly connect with co-workers and business partners! Skype for Business is instant messaging, voice conferencing, video calling, sharing and collaboration all rolled into one package. Skype for Business lets you add up to 250 people to online meetings, gives you enterprise-grade security, and is integrated into your existing Office 365 subscription!

What does it work well for?

Internal instant messaging, quick internal meetings, collaboration sessions, document sharing, checking an employees’ availability (it will reflect Outlook calendar free / busy information)?

What does it not work well for?

Large meetings with many external dial-in participants (we would need to add conference dial-in features if this is a desired use).

How do I install Skype for Business on my computer?

First check to see if you have Skype for Business installed as a part of your Microsoft Office Suite of applications in the Start Menu of your Desktop.

If you don’t already have it installed visit the Office 365 Portal to install application.

Click “Install Software” and the “Install” button as shown:

How do I use it?

We'll show you the basics, then check out the links below for details.

Here's what the main page of the app looks like:

When you hover over a contact's picture, a quick menu appears:

If you click the IM button, you'll get the conversation window.

TIP: You can also just double-click a contact's picture to open the conversation window and start an IM.

Here's what the conversation (IM) window looks like:

And here's what the meeting window looks like:

Welcome Our New Employees

Created By
Ramon Velez


Created with images by National Eye Institute - "Documenting Research Findings" • davedehetre - "thwarted" • Bordecia34 - "HIV/Aids Test" • www.ilmicrofono.it - "bodycare, clinic, clipboard, doc, doctor, female," • Parentingupstream - "stethoscope hospital doctor" • PublicDomainPictures - "baby birth born" • WellspringCS - "Lego Play" • NS Newsflash - "Newspapers B&W (4)" • juhansonin - "NextGen is unusable" • FirmBee - "stock iphone business"

Report Abuse

If you feel that this video content violates the Adobe Terms of Use, you may report this content by filling out this quick form.

To report a Copyright Violation, please follow Section 17 in the Terms of Use.