PCA proudly facilitated its 1st Medication Assisted Treatment/Medication Supported Recovery for Peer Support Specialists and Coaches. 9 Denver area coaches attended and spent the next 6 hours engaged in Q and A that really seemed to touch their hearts.
There can be little argument that opiate dependence has skyrocketed to a number 1 position as cause of death of younger Americans. Prescription-writing has been running amok for 10 years and a couple of generations have been introduced to recreational opiate use in a whole new light. Both apathy and greed have contributed to the creation of a dependent zombie underworld that turns to imported cheaper heroin as a substitute. Sadly though, this zombie nation are made up of us. Our children, our families, our neighbors, our community. It makes no sense to continue to vilify them. We need to do our best to save them.
Making the choice to use Medication in addressing an opiate dependence is never an easy one. There is an over-serving of prejudice and stigma, both internal and external, which accompanies that choice. Unlike most similar medication approaches to healthcare, replacement/ antagonist therapies for opiates are held to a different standard. Patients are blamed and vilified as weak and distasteful for requiring treatment.
The PCA training was written with the cooperation of CCAR and Meaningful Trainings of NYC. It is peer oriented training- not a clinical training. It is designed to illuminate coaches how to understand the dichotomies of MAT choices and how to help a coach support someone maneuvering their support networks reactions. “You’re just trading one addiction for another” is a reaction that a diabetic rarely hears when they begin insulin, but an opiate dependent person hears this diatribe repeatedly.
As a society, as a community, we need to make much stronger strides towards helping our community find stability. MAT can do this. We have a training scheduled in Colorado Springs in July and Denver in August. Please consider joining PCA’s efforts to provide greater support to the opiate dependent communities of Colorado.