AUBURN — Tri-County Mental Health Services and its partners will host “Community Partners Engaging in Community Conversation,” the second in a series of conversations around the growing opioid crisis, its impact on individuals, families and communities, and how, by working together, the challenge can be met in part by increased availability of medication assisted treatment for those who are struggling with opioid use disorder.
The forum will be held Wednesday, March 20, at Auburn Middle School, 38 Falcon Drive.
In spring 2017, Tri-County Mental Health Services responded to a funding opportunity from the Maine Health Access Foundation offering grants to develop a plan to provide medically assisted treatment for opioid use disorder for un- and underinsured populations. The foundation provided a two-year award totaling $93,421 to enable Tri-County Mental Health and its partners to complete the planning process. Once a plan has been developed and implemented in Androscoggin County, it will be replicated in rural western Maine.
Tri-County is leading a coalition of key partners –St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center, Central Maine Health Care, Healthy Androscoggin, United Ambulance, Community Concepts, Androscoggin Home Health Care and Hospice, Androscoggin County Sheriff, Auburn Police Departnment, Lewiston Police Department, Bates College and the Maine Alliance for Addiction Recovery.
The evening will be moderated by Tri-County Mental Health’s Chief Executive Officer Catherine Ryder. Two panels will present information to the audience. One is made up of Steering Committee members, each of whom will address, from his or her perspective, the vast increase in the misuse of opioids and how people suffering from opioid use disorder can get help, particularly through medically assisted treatment with medication, like Suboxone. The second panel will be composed of people who are in recovery and their family members. Each will speak to the impact substance use disorder has beyond the individual directly affected. Each panel presentation will be followed by a period of questions and answers.
For more information, visit www.tcmhs.org.