According to the 2021 National Survey on Drug Use and Health report, 46.3 million people aged 12 or older (or 16.5 percent of the population) had a Substance Use Disorder, including 29.5 million people who had an alcohol use disorder and 24 million people who had a drug use disorder. 94 percent of them received NO treatment. Substance Use Disorders continue to grow, while resources remain incredibly scarce, furthering the need for an innovative, technology-enabled approach that better addresses the needs of clients, service providers and recovery organizations.
I started my own recovery journey in 2019, and experienced firsthand the administrative obstacles that stood in the way of finding recovery support. I saw a whole team of professionals dedicated to helping others who were overwhelmed with menial tasks. I knew that digitizing things like medical records, administrative forms, and demographic surveys would free up their time, allowing them to put more energy towards the people rather than paperwork.
We launched Kyros in 2021 to increase positive recovery outcomes for the millions of people affected by Substance Use Disorder. We leverage the power of technology to connect clients with providers and streamline functions like billing, required insurance coverage, access to insurance contracting and workforce management so we can bridge the enormous gap between those seeking support and those able to meet that need.
Kyros not only makes it easier for people with Substance Use Disorder to get the recovery support they need, but also makes it easy for people in recovery to give back and begin a fulfilling career by training them to work as Certified Peer Recovery Specialists. Our strategic partnerships with over 66 Minnesota nonprofits provides free Peer Recovery Specialist (PRS) training to give people with Substance Use Disorder stable employment opportunities no matter their history.
Our tech-enhanced approach gives clients easier access to services, and offers licensed professionals and providers better working conditions, flexibility, and higher pay. We also offer ongoing mentorship for our Peers to support both their personal and professional development. Overall, we support the recovery community by helping organizations increase their capacity to provide care, and deliver better care for their clients at no cost to them, resulting in better outcomes for the people they serve and healthier communities in which individuals in recovery can thrive. For those organizations that partner with us for administrative and billing support, we are able to obtain a much higher percentage of billables received and positively impact their bottom line.
Kyros is the largest employer of Certified Peer Recovery Specialists in Minnesota after just 18 months in existence – most of whom came to the platform uncertified. We have secured 66 organizational partnerships, served 1,800 clients, and created a workforce of more than 180 peers, which is approximately 30 percent of all working peers in Minnesota.
What keeps me dedicated to this work, beyond my own personal journey, is stories like Gavin’s. Gavin was at his low point after being released from jail and immediately returning to drug use. Fortunately, he made the courageous decision to seek treatment, maintain sobriety, and join Kyros as a Certified Peer Recovery Specialist (CPRS) to make a difference in the lives of others.
Gavin’s employment with Kyros has led him to many firsts – his first apartment, phone bill, car, and laptop – but most importantly, Kyros has enabled him to follow his dreams and help others follow theirs.
And we are just getting started. We have ambitious plans to become a national offering and make Substance Use Disorder recovery possible for anyone and everyone. It is our mission to transform the recovery space and become the most trusted, seamless, timely and holistic platform for people living with Substance Use Disorder and professionals devoted to helping those thrive in recovery.
I hope the Kyros story helps inspire other technologists to also deploy the incredible power of our knowledge resources to high impact social issues or community needs.