In Hampshire County, drug and alcohol abuse is something that is very present and that has caused an important amount of damage, even though this problem may not be as alarming as it is in other Massachusetts counties. It means that a lot of people in the county need help from treatment, but it's not that easy for everyone. To help these people get the help they need, there is a service called assessment that will essentially determine the severity of their addiction and will give them options as to what the best course of treatment is for that individual. This will help ensure that they can make a full recovery.
Alcohol and Drug Abuse in Hampshire County, MA
As we've mentioned, the substance abuse problem in Hampshire County is not as bad compared to other counties in the state, but it doesn't it is not cause for concern. Alcohol-impaired driving is part of that problem, and between 2014 and 2018, it caused 11 deaths, which is equal to 24% of driving deaths for those same years. Excessive drinking is also an issue that is present in Hampshire County, as in 2017, 24% of the adult population reported doing it, and this includes binge and heavy drinking. And although drug overdoses still happened in the past years, the drug poisoning death rate is one of the lowest of all counties in Massachusetts, with 114 deaths per 100,000 population for 2016-2018. Finally, there is the opioid epidemic, and for this statistic, which is the prescribing rate, it is important to know that Hampshire County's rate is in the higher range. For 2018, the rate was at 44.2 prescriptions per 100 people, based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Hampshire County's Substance Abuse Prevention Efforts
There is hope for Hampshire County, as there are lots of services and programs available to the community for the prevention of substance abuse. For example, there is the Strategic Planning Initiative for Families and Youth (SPIFFY) Coalition, which works very hard to decrease the access of drugs and alcohol to its youth and helping parents navigate and prevent risky behaviors. The Sheriff's Office of Hampshire County has many treatment groups that are available for those who were sentenced to the Hampshire House of Correction, and they include substance abuse education, aftercare, as well as Alcoholics and Narcotics Anonymous. The House of Correction also has the Western Massachusetts Recovery & Wellness Center, which is one of their facilities, and they offer treatment for those incarcerated that have been charged with an OUI (operating while under the influence), or any offense related to an OUI. They also have the Lifeskills Program, which is another treatment program for substance abuse, and was put in place to help reduce recidivism, as often drug abuse is a contributing factor to crime. The opioid epidemic is a problem in Hampshire County, as we've mentioned, so prevention is extremely important. To help with this, there are lots of prescription dropbox locations in the county that residents can use to safely dispose of medications that they are no longer using or that have expired. Lastly, there is Hampshire HOPE, and their main focus is to stop and then reverse the rates of opioid abuse that are constantly on the rise. HOPE promotes harm reduction, which is very helpful in certain situations, but it is also of high importance that those struggling with addiction seek help from treatment, so they can make a full recovery.
Here is a list of the different treatment centers in Hampshire County, Massachusetts. The list can be incomplete so please do not hesitate to contact one of our treatment specialists at 1-800-304-2219.