New Bedford has been suffering from the consequences that come with substance abuse for a while now, and it has caused so much damage in the community. For someone who is struggling with an addiction to drugs or alcohol, it is of extreme importance that they seek substance abuse treatment. But, for some, treatment must be proceeded by a detox phase, so that the addict can go through the withdrawal symptoms with supervision, and then they can attend a treatment center that best fits their needs, whether that be an inpatient or outpatient program, so they can get a real chance at a full recovery.
Drug and Alcohol Abuse in New Bedford, MA
For us to really understand the gravity of the substance abuse problem in New Bedford, we will be going over some statistics from the county which this city is part of, which is Bristol County. For instance, alcohol-impaired driving is definitely an issue in the county. In fact, between 2014 and 2018, there were 62 lives lost because of individuals who drank too much but got behind the wheel anyway. Excessive is also present in Bristol County, as 21% of the adult population in 2017 reported either binge or heavy drinking. Drug overdose has led to lots of deaths as well, with the drug poisoning death rate being at 770 deaths per 100,000 population for 2016-2018. Now, the opioid crisis is an alarming problem in New Bedford, and in 2018, there were 54 overdose deaths that were opioid-related, according to the 2019 Southcoast Health Community Needs Assessment. Not only that, but there were 1,627 hospital discharges that were related to opioids in 2015, based on zip codes. Finally, substance abuse also affects the youth population, and in 2016, 45.8% of high school students reported ever drinking alcohol, 40.7% reported using marijuana at least once in their lifetime, 6.5% for pain medications, and 1.2% for heroin. This does tell us how prevalent substance abuse is in New Bedford and how it is affecting a big part of its community.
Prevention Efforts in New Bedford for Substance Abuse
A lot of help is required in order to effectively combat the issues mentioned above. For example, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) announced in September 2019 that they would establish the 360 Strategy in the Southcoast region of the state of Massachusetts. This strategy includes enforcement, diversion control, and community outreach. The Bristol County Sherriff’s Office is also very helpful, as they have the K-9 Unit, whose task is assisting in activities such as building searches, narcotics, and explosives detection, etc. They also offer the Choices program to kids, so they hear testimonials from inmates, so they can see the consequences of making bad decisions. They have lots of public education programs, including an Alcohol/Drug Awareness Program for schools, to teach students the real dangers of drugs and alcohol. Finally, the New Bedford Police Department has the Organized Crime Intelligence Bureau, and those assigned to it are tasked with the investigations related to individuals or groups that supply narcotics to street dealers. This is extremely helpful in making New Bedford drug-free for the safety of its residents.
Here is a list of the different drug & alcohol rehab services in New Bedford, Massachusetts. The list can be incomplete so please do not hesitate to contact one of our treatment specialists at 1-800-304-2219.