Worried about a substance use disorder in a loved one? There has been no shortage of recent discouraging data about opioids and other addiction. But there is help from a variety of sources for those struggling with substance use disorder. Here are a few options: Riverside Community Care has 24/7 emergency psychiatric care response for adults and children, 800-529-5077. Also, the MA Substance Abuse helpline is available for information and referrals to treatment programs: 800-327-5050 or www.helpline-online.com The helpline can match callers based on geography, language and insurance/cost needs. And most importantly, remember to always call 911 if you suspect someone is experiencing a drug overdose, and stay with them until help arrives. The Health and Human Services department staff members are also available to work with people to help find appropriate treatment and support 617-796-1420. The department welcomes all your questions and worries, so don’t worry alone. The Newton PATH (multidisciplinary team for opioid Prevention, Awareness, Treatment and Hope) website includes resources listed by type of need. Topic areas include first steps toward recovery, inpatient detox, residential/intensive outpatient treatment, maintenance treatment and support groups. Find these resources and information at www.newtonma.gov/newtonpath
Are you interested in helping build a healthier Newton? The volunteer arm of the Newton Health and Human Services Department is the Newton Medical Reserve Corps (MRC). These individuals come from a variety of backgrounds, including non-medical and medically trained people, and have an interest in public health. Volunteers, who are a part of the national MRC program, participate in general public health activities such as flu clinics, and also may be contacted during an emergency if volunteers are needed to help staff a shelter or provide emergency medication. The MRC’s newest initiative is the Community Connections program to help promote the work of the HHS department out in the community, and to better connect residents to community-based resources. The MRC is recruiting a few special volunteers who are interested in regular volunteer hours as a part of this initiative. An informational meeting will be held tonight (June 14) from 6 to 7 p.m. in Room 106C at Newton City Hall. If you’re interested in the MRC or the Community Connections initiative and can’t make it to the meeting, email firstname.lastname@example.org to connect with us.
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