Special Report: Fighting Back — The Opioid Crisis

Where can they go? Treatment in the Highlands

Last year, more than 1,400 people in Dutchess County and another 369 in Putnam were admitted to state-regulated opioid treatment programs. More than 80 percent were addicted to heroin.

For Part 3 of our series on the opioid crisis in the Highlands, we wanted to learn more about what options are available to addicts, including medication and counseling. Putnam County has three treatment centers: the for-profit Arms Acres and the nonprofit CoveCare Center (formerly Putnam Family & Community Services) in Carmel and the Franciscan-run St. Christopher’s Inn in Garrison.

At the Arms Acres treatment center in Carmel, methadone is dispensed in cups and then mixed by patients with juice to mask its unpleasant taste. (Photo by Anita Peltonen)

There are no treatment facilities in Beacon since the Turning Point detox center moved to Poughkeepsie after St. Francis Hospital went bankrupt in 2013 and the nonprofit Lexington Center for Recovery moved to Wappingers Falls.

Opioid addiction is typically a long and bumpy road, with relapses and returns. Sometimes the journey ends in death. But ultimately treatment centers are places of hope, as doctors and counselors save far more than are lost.

This series has four parts.

In Part 1, reporters Michael Turton and Liz Schevtchuk Armstrong spoke with the parents of young men who struggled with opioid addiction. One died, one survived, but they faced many of the same obstacles in getting treatment. We asked them to share their experiences, hoping it would provide a road map.

Intro // Sasha’s Story // Max’s Story

In Part 2, we examined the role of law enforcement and the courts in battling the epidemic. Turton looked at the work of the Putnam County Drug Court, while Jeff Simms spent time with Beacon and Dutchess County police officers who are at the front lines.

Intro // A Day in Drug Court // “We Can’t Get Our Regular Work Done” // Burlington Chief on Opioids, Crime

In Part 3, we explained treatment options. Brian PJ Cronin profiled the Dutchess County Stabilization Center, an innovative first stop for those in crisis, while Anita Peltonen and Armstrong visited treatment centers at Graymoor in Garrison, Arms Acres in Carmel and CoveCare Center (formerly Putnam Family & Community Services) in Carmel.

Intro // Dutchess County Stablization // Arms Acres // CoveCare // St. Christopher’s Inn // What Does It Cost?

Finally, in Part 4, we shared the thoughts of specialists, counselors, doctors and those struggling with addiction about what they feel should take priority in addressing the problem.

Intro // The Ways Out // Where to Find Help // The Opioid Crisis (Charts) // Voices From Our Community (Video)

We appreciate your feedback about the series and thoughts about how best to address the epidemic. Email [email protected] or post a comment below.