In one Portland neighborhood, new hope is dawning for hundreds of people seeking treatment for addiction.
Recovery Works Northwest recently cut the ribbon on the state’s first alcohol and drug withdrawal (detox) management facility made possible with Measure 110 funding. The 16-bed facility in Southeast Portland will be the first of its kind to serve Oregon Health Plan members and uninsured people seeking treatment.
“Recovery Works Northwest is committed to leading with compassion and kindness in all our endeavors,” said Joe Bazeghi, director of engagement at Recovery Works NW. “We know from experience that treatment, when engaged with voluntarily, has better outcomes.”
The new detox facility is expected to serve as many as 1,200 people a year as they journey toward recovery. Medical staff, including physicians and nurses, will oversee patient care through the acute stages of withdrawal. Certified alcohol and drug counselors and peer recovery mentors will offer support and connect patients with follow-up care and support services.
As a new and far more deadly wave of illicit fentanyl makes its way into the majority of Oregon’s street drugs, especially in rural areas, Recovery Works NW has established a fentanyl-specific continuum of care pilot program. In partnership with housing provider Bridges to Change, the program provides a bed within a dedicated residential house free of charge for up to six months for those ready to recover.
The program also includes in-depth educational and support groups, significant peer support, access to addiction medicine and mental health services, and case management including supported housing and employment as individuals near completion. Patients in this program must be engaged in Recovery Works NW’s fentanyl-specific outpatient treatment for at least nine hours a week.
“There are no easy answers to this crisis,” said Bazeghi. “Our challenge as a community is to create more capacity and safer spaces for people to heal. There is no time to wait; this is a matter of life and death.”
Recovery Works NW has also been operating outpatient addiction treatment clinics in Tigard and NE Portland for several years, and Measure 110 funding recently helped open a third outpatient clinic in Newberg.
If you or someone you know is struggling with substance use, you’re not alone. Oregon’s Alcohol & Drug Helpline can provide referrals to local resources for peer support and treatment. Call 800-923-4357 24/7, or text Recovery Now to 839863. You can also explore our statewide initiative Save Lives Oregon, which provides harm reduction supplies and technical support to a variety of community based organizations and other groups that serve people in various stages of recovery and those at highest risk of overdose.
The opioid overdose-reversal medication naloxone is now available over-the-counter without a prescription. Learn more about naloxone on our blog.