We have recently established a 501(c)(3) nonprofit foundation to help people with substance use disorder learn how to live a sober life through service, support, and education. A particular focus of our program is working with veterans as well as other individuals in the local area who are struggling. This issue has become particularly acute because of reductions in funding for state programs due to COVID-19.
An upcoming article in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) reports truly alarming figures regarding the effects that COVID-19 has had on individuals struggling with addiction. The study, looking at data from 1/1/20 through 5/31/20, reports a 32% increase in fentanyl abuse, a 20% increase methamphetamine abuse, a 13% increase in heroin abuse and a 10% increase in cocaine abuse. This report reveals that the damage from the COVID-19 pandemic extends into our communities in more ways than healthcare challenges. We are truly seeing the emergence of an epidemic of substance use disorder that is only now becoming apparent.
The combination of economic difficulties, social isolation and reduced recovery resources associated with COVID-19 have combined to create a “perfect storm“ for individuals with substance use disorder and other co-occurring mental health difficulties. Our agency has seen a dramatic uptick in demand for services which has unfortunately been accompanied by a reduced ability by individuals to pay for services. All of this is against a background of reduced state funding for health and human services.
All contributions are fully tax deductible and go toward assisting men and women diagnosed with Substance Use Disorder receive the treatment and support they so desperately need. The treatment an individual receives will be based directly on the clinical recommendations of our staff and may include Detoxification, Inpatient or Residential Treatment, Intensive Outpatient Programming, and/or Sober/Recovery Housing.