The opioid epidemic is all around us. It has no barriers. So, if someone came to you seeking help for an opioid addiction, where would you turn?
There is now an option available to adults who don’t have insurance or are underinsured called Medication Assisted Recovery Services (MARS). This free program is for eligible adults age 18 and over that live in Gaston and Lincoln counties. MARS is an opioid treatment and recovery program funded by a grant from the Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).
MARS uses Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT), counseling and peer support to help adults with an opioid use disorder stop using and move toward recovery. People at risk, or living with, infectious diseases can receive education, care coordination, testing, counseling and risk reduction services. MARS helps connect adults to other services, including tobacco cessation programs. MARS staff will talk with individuals about their needs for anything related to home, health, purpose and community.
This includes, but is not limited to:
- Housing (including poverty and unsafe living conditions)
- Social activities
- Family support
- Health insurance
Medication Assisted Treatment uses Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved medications that have been proven to reduce the misuse of drugs, overdose deaths, problem behavior and transmission of infectious diseases. People are more likely to begin and stay in treatment when these medications are used along with counseling and other services. MARS will not only use medications but include regular visits with medical staff, counselors, support groups and peer support specialists. Random drug tests are also a routine part of services.
Peer Support includes a range of activities or interactions between people who share similar experiences of being diagnosed with a substance use disorder, mental health conditions, or both. A peer support specialist gives support to others with similar challenges. The peer support specialist doesn’t take the place of a therapist or clinician. They are people living in long-term recovery who assist others by bringing their own personal knowledge of what it is like to strive toward recovery for a substance use disorder or mental health condition.
In Gaston County
McLeod Addictive Disease Center
549 Cox Road, Gastonia, NC 28054
Call: 704-865-1558, ext. 2911 to make a referral or learn more.
In Lincoln County
Integrated Care of Greater Hickory
1228 N. Flint Street, Lincolnton, NC 28092
Call: 828-322-5915, ext. 220 to make a referral or learn more.
Seeking opioid treatment and recovery but live outside of Gaston or Lincoln County?
Call Partners Access to Care at 1-888-235-HOPE to speak with a licensed clinician.