Charlotte Hungerford Hospital’s Connecticut Mental Health Center has a certified opiate addiction counselor tasked with connecting and assisting individuals that are opiate-dependent with resources throughout the region.
The Addition Counselor advises those that are opiate-dependent or know someone that visits CHH’s mental health hospital for treatment for opiate addiction counseling or comes into the emergency department or behavioral health unit and says “I’m thinking about treatment. I want to know what my options are.” As the drug becomes more widespread in area communities, more people are coming forward seeking treatment for opiate addiction counseling. This is also evidenced by the demand for soon-to-be methadone treatment facility in Torrington and other agencies that work with addiction throughout the corner of the state.
One of the main challenges working with those living with addiction at our mental health hospital has been connecting patients with detox centers, since there are none in Litchfield County. Other challenges beyond bed availability are insurance coverage and geographical barriers, where those seeking treatment don’t have access to the necessary transportation.
The position was proposed by the Litchfield County Opiate Task Force, a diverse group of CHH Professionals and community stakeholders, after brainstorming how to best address heroin addiction and overdoses that have been occurring more frequently throughout northwest Connecticut. CHH and the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services partnered to fund the new position which is considered a new and innovative case management approach for treating heroin addiction.
There is no other position in a state hospital like this, according to the spokeswoman for the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services. CHH’s Connecticut Mental Health Center is a pioneer in building strong relationships with those that are opiate-dependent in the community, and connecting them with resources to help them recover.
If you would like opiate addiction counseling or assistance for yourself, a family member or friend who is dealing with opiate addiction, or if you would like a free resource guide, contact Delia Caruso in Opiate Case Management at (860) 496-6381.