CMH To Work With Inebriate Center

August 9, 2002
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GRAND RAPIDS — Kent County Community Mental Health will have ongoing involvement in the Public Inebriate Center at Mel Trotter Ministries.

Its involvement is expected to include mental health consulting as the need arises, and putting Mel Trotter staff in touch with other agencies with whom CMH contracts.

Additionally, CMH is open to sending someone in outreach to the center to assess and authorize individuals for treatment, said Ross Buitendorp, CMH’s contract manager for the inebriate center.

The public inebriate issue also is an issue with some of CMH’s detoxification facilities in that the organization has a limited amount of federal and state dollars for treatment.

“It’s always a balancing act to insure that we’re able to give treatment to whoever needs it,” Buitendorp remarked.

He said some individuals who could qualify as “public inebriate” just want to go through detox to take a break from “using,” but have no intention of going into treatment.

Some may cycle through detox — CMH’s most expensive service at $170 a day beginning Oct. 1 — eight to 12 times a year, he noted.

“So we also can refer individuals to the inebriate center as a safe place to go. It’s one more outreach point where we can give individuals information.

“I’m hopeful that this will be part of the substance abuse continuum of care in the sense that this is a place where an individual, who is maybe not yet ready to change, can go and have one more contact with somebody who can tell him about treatment options.”

The ultimate hope is that the individual will eventually choose to get into recovery, he said.      

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