As part of the ongoing effort to stem the heroin and opioid crisis, a number of service providers are getting together Monday to offer support for people who are struggling with addiction and their families.
The Monroe County Heroin Task Force is hosting the outreach event, along with Rochester Regional Health and several local recovery groups and agencies.
Deputy Mike Favata, a member of the Heroin Task Force, says it's an opportunity for people to learn about treatment options and resources that can lead to recovery. He says the task force is trying to develop better communication between the people who need help and the multitude of government, private, and grass roots organizations that can steer them in the right direction.
"We know we're gonna fail in certain areas and we know we're gonna succeed in certain areas and that's how we're gonna make this strong," Fava said, in reference to the county's efforts to reduce the number of deaths related to heroin and opioid addiction.
The lack of detox beds is still a critical problem, according to local addiction grassroots organizations. The 18 new beds that were recently announced as the result of a state grant won't be available for several months. A WXXI News investigation recently determined that there are currently 25 detox beds in Monroe County. David Attridge, executive director of Recovery Now NY says they don’t come close to filling the need.
"With just having the 25 right now, we are going to lose lives. To try to stop that, we need to come up with different options at this point; look more into outpatient, look more into 12 step (programs), coming and getting people and taking them to meetings instead of just saying 'We're putting you on a waiting list.' "
Unity Hospital has an ambulatory detox program that can accommodate up to nine patients. To be eligible for those services, patients must have a substance use disorder diagnosis, be in the early stages of their addiction, and have the support of parents or a spouse. Attridge says how that he is aware of this option, he can probably make enough referrals to fill those nine positions within the week.
Monday's outreach event for addiction resources and treatment opportunities is at Dolomite Lodge at 3100 Atlantic Avenue in Penfield from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
We want to hear what you have to say about opioid and heroin use in our community. Please click on this link to take a short survey.