Mountain Comprehensive Care Centers receives grant to help fight the opioid epidemic
MCCC joins five other Kentucky organizations receiving the award
LETCHER COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) - The opioid epidemic continues to claim the lives of people throughout the country.
In Kentucky, the drug overdose rate is higher than the national average.
“I think that a lot of it has to do with the poverty, the isolation here. It’s not unique specifically to Eastern Kentucky, Appalachia as a whole,” said Program Director for Southern Kentucky for Mountain Comprehensive Care Centers (MCCC) Adam Maggard.
Maggard says the COVID-19 pandemic has worsened an already large problem.
“We’ve had isolation, we’ve had loss of work, you know loss of family, our support systems. All these things are factored into a definite increase in substance use, relapses have skyrocketed,” he said.
To help reduce the rate of overdose is the Rural Communities Opioid Response Program (RCORP) - Implementation grant. MCCC is among six other Kentucky health organizations to receive the award.
“We want to talk about what may have caused these individuals to end up in active addiction. There past history, maybe their home life as children, you know something contributed to that,” he said.
Maggard said there are three main components the program focuses on.
The first is reducing stigma.
“You know unfortunately a lot of people the see somebody on the street and see someone that is struggling and using drugs and think negatively of them,” he said.
The second includes establishing drop-in recovery centers.
“Provide a safe environment to where individuals who are struggling can come get a free hot meal, they can get a shower , they can wash clothes. We can help them with a job interviews. We can help them put in applications,” he said.
The third is to create a quick response team to help in the fight against addiction.
“So what we want to do is work with community partners to identify hotspots if you will and unfortunately hotspots do exist where there is in our community where this is an increase in overdose and substance use,” he said.
Maggard said the grant officially started on September 1st and is in the beginning stages. However, he said plans are in place.
For more information, you can call 606-536-5014.
Mountain Comprehensive Care Centers crisis line is 1-800-422-1060.
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