RUTLAND - On Friday, June 7 Rutland Regional Medical Center and
the Vermont Department of Health announced that they had finalized
the contract to establish a multi-faceted addiction treatment
center in Rutland.
The West Ridge Center for Addiction Recovery will be located in
Building 10 of the Howe Center, and is scheduled to open in October
2013. The program will provide medication assisted treatment
(methadone or buprenorphine) to 400 opiate addicted Vermonters
primarily from Rutland and Bennington Counties. This start up phase
of the project will be financed largely by the State and will
entail a complete renovation of the space. Once in operation, the
funding will come primarily from Vermont Medicaid and the State
will offer grant funds to cover those patients who are
"I believe this is a service that is critical to our area. The
program and treatment center will prove to be very beneficial not
only for patients and their families, but also for the community,"
said Tom Huebner, President of Rutland Regional.
Currently it is estimated that up to 100 patients per day travel
up to three hours a day outside of Rutland County to receive
services and treatment needed to manage their addiction. A
patient's vow to their recovery and proper management of their
addiction is a 365-day a year commitment. Providing them the
necessary resources and expertise within their own community is
essential to their success and overall well-being. The goal of the
West Ridge Center is to help make treatment services fit into the
patient's life so that they can fulfill other obligations such as
taking care of their family or holding down a job.
"The establishment of the West Ridge Center for Addiction
Recovery provides a critical hub for the treatment of opioid
addiction in Rutland and surrounding counties. Individuals
struggling with opioid dependence will now be able to access a
centralized, local, program which will provide comprehensive
treatment prioritizing sobriety, personal health, and
citizenship - key components of successful Recovery from
addiction," stated Dr. Gordon Frankle, Medical Director of
Psychiatric Services at Rutland Regional.
Rutland Regional collaborated with the Howard Center in
Burlington to develop the new treatment center model and program.
Open seven days per week, 365 days a year the West Ridge Center is
expected to treat close to 300 Vermonters a day. Rutland Regional
will be hiring more than 20 staff including Therapists, Substance
Abuse Counselors, Nurses, Case Managers, Security Officers, and
Administrative positions necessary to support opiate addicted
patients in their recovery.
Dr. Jeff McKee, Director of Psychiatric Services, stated "The
growing problem of untreated opiate addiction has had a significant
impact on almost everyone who lives in our community. Access
to medication-assisted treatment has been shown to be a critical
component of community wide efforts to combat opiate
addiction. We are very excited that after many months of
discussion and planning we now have a firm plan to create these
high quality treatment options for patients that previously did not
exist in our community."