Drug Treatment Center Plans to Open Soon Near Punxsutawney

6:14:16 proposed drug clinic in punxsyPUNXSUTAWNEY, Pa. (EYT) — Despite the feelings of some in the community, The Bridge Into Wellness – a drug treatment center located just outside of Punxsutawney in Young Township – will soon open.

Marissa Terry, a recovery specialist and partner with CEO Nicole Wray in The Bridge Into Wellness, spoke at length Wednesday about their goals and what the treatment facility will be doing to help those with drug addiction problems, particularly those addicted to heroin.

“Everyone talks about trying to do something about it (helping those with heroin addiction), but no one wants to do anything,” Terry said. “I truly feel people aren’t educated about it, and that’s why they are against it.”

“We know what kind of a challenge we are taking on, but we are up for it, and we are excited that we have the chance to help people get off heroin,” Terry said.

Terry said the clinic, which is to be located at 639 Route 36, just outside the Borough of Punxsy, will not have drugs on site.

“We will be able to write prescriptions for medications to wean people off heroin, but there will be no drugs in the clinic,” Terry said. “We are going to provide a complete program that includes counseling and therapy with recovery specialists and a certified doctor on site.”

Terry said a treatment center has already opened in Waynesburg in Greene County.

She is hopeful the Young Township facility will open at the beginning of July, and there are plans to open another in Lake City, near Erie.

For Young Township’s Board of Supervisors, chairman Peter Betts and vice chairman Sam Farcus had little or no comment.

“I really don’t have any comments at this time,” Farcus said. “Everything is up in the air, and we aren’t done researching it at this time.”

Some people who live and have businesses in the general area are not in favor of the treatment center, but wished to remain anonymous.

The township has no ordinance that would prevent such a business from opening.

Terry, who was formerly a Licensed Practical Nurse at Family Health Medicine in Jamestown, N.Y., said all she and Wray want to do is help people get off heroin and be able to lead happy, productive lives.

“People who enroll in the treatment program will first receive an assessment to determine whether the program is appropriate to them,” she said.

Each person will be seen by a doctor and recovery specialist and have a personalized program developed to address their particular needs. The doctor will determine how often a patient might have to be seen,” Terry said.

The center will maintain contact with the patient through regular telephone calls to check on their progress and provide any support that may be needed.

Terry also said a non-profit element is being organized to help pregnant women that have addiction problems. They are also planning to use alternative therapies, such as yoga or art therapy, to help a person recover from addiction.

“Heroin doesn’t discriminate. Anyone could become addicted to it,” Terry said. “So many doctors prescribe it for pain relief, then the street use, it’s become an epidemic. We’re excited to try and help people get off it.”

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