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AVH hosting forum on addiction treatment services

January 09, 2019
BERLIN — In a recent press release from Gov. Chris Sununu, it was announced that there will be forums throughout New Hampshire to introduce the addiction services that have been set at nine hubs throughout the state. Androscoggin Valley Hospital, one of the hubs, is holding a forum this week on Wednesday.

These forums are introducing "The Doorway-NH" which is described as a "hub and spoke" model to "transform the system." People with substance use disorders will be served at these huib stations.

"The Doorway-NH represents a new, comprehensive and local response to the opioid epidemic in New Hampshire," said Sununu in a statement. "It will provide a single point of entry for residents seeking treatment for SUD. The location of each of the nine Doorways will ensure that help for substance use disorder will be less than an hour away. This new approach will provide an integrated, one-stop-shop model offering the full array of treatment, recovery and self-sufficiency services."

The forum at Androscoggin Valley Hospital on Page Hill Road in Berlin is on Wednesday, Jan. 9 from 10 until 11:30 a.m. in the Mt. Success conference room.

Health care agencies in 9 regions within the state will be used as hubs for substance misuse treatment and recovery services including the Androscoggin Valley Hospital in Berlin and Littleton Regional health Care, Governor Chris Sununu announced in October.

When it was announced, the Governor spoke at the State House and said that nine regions will act as hubs to combat the opioid crisis in a shared effort using $8.8 million in federal funds. Doorway-NH and the hub stations are being funded by a $45.8 million two-year federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration (SAMHSA) State Opioid Response grant. The grants are set to expand prevention, treatment and recovery services over two years.

"Taking that first step of asking for help for substance use disorder is often the hardest. The model we are proposing is intended to make that first step the easiest," Sununu said in a statement. 

 "This funding will help us drastically reform how individuals are able to access substance abuse disorder services, increase access to that treatment, reduce unmet treatment needs, and reduce the devastating impact that opioid use disorder has had on our communities through investments in prevention, treatment, and recovery services."

The nine hubs are to ensure residents in new Hampshire access to these services with a one-hour drive minimum and 24 hour telephone access for screening, assessment and evaluations.

The current 211 hotline for addiction services is set to be enhanced.

The other seven hubs are Concord Hospital; Wentworth-Douglass Hospital in Dover; Dartmouth-Hitchcock in Hanover and Keene; Cheshire Medical Center in Keene; Lakes Regional General Hospital in Laconia; and Granite Pathways in Manchester and Nashua.

Granite Pathways, affiliated with FedCap, will provide additional services in rehabilitation and social services and was recently approved a 36 bed treatment facility at the Sununu Center juvenile detention center in Manchester.

A lot of the federal funds will be used for other "spokes" such as medication-assisted treatment, peer recovery support programs and mobile crisis units.

As some safe stations have been set up in Manchester and Nashua, Sununu hopes that the federal funds will help alleviate some pressure at those locations. 

Martin Lord Osman
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