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Community comes together to help those battling addiction know they are not alone amid COVID-19

COVID-19 isolation could put people struggling with addiction at risk for relapse or open the door to drug and alcohol abuse.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark — Right now we are all doing our due diligence and practicing social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, that isolation could put people struggling with addiction at risk for relapse or open the door to drug and alcohol abuse.

“People are home with their families more often than they are used to, their routines are not at all the same – it’s really kind of the perfect storm for somebody struggling with substance abuse,” said Dori Haddock, Regional Director of Bradford Health Services.

Dori Haddock with Bradford Health Services, said the treatment facility has seen an increase in people looking for help since the Coronavirus pandemic began.

“More people are reaching out. We had record admissions last week so that tells us, with the stress occurring right now, people are reaching out for help and they are getting what they need,” said Haddock.

Haddock said, like many treatment facilities, Bradford is conducting meetings virtually, with over 900 telehealth sessions company-wide last week alone.

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“Traditionally group therapy is not done in Telehealth, usually that's an individual session, and so we are utilizing Zoom and it’s going really well,” Haddock.

New Life Church is helping people battling addiction through a 12-step discipleship program called Regeneration. Pastor Dale Hull said the program started last year, but because of the pandemic, has moved online to serve those in need.

Text Regen to 88000

“Every Thursday night we are still meeting, we just do it through Facetime Live and the whole group has a large meeting," said Hull. From there, about 30 minutes later, everyone goes to Zoom they meet together in a conference call and they still have their small groups and the accountability and they are able to talk and communicate that way.” 

On the AR Takeback website, an entire page is dedicated to assisting those in recovery during this health crisis. There are links to recovery programs, unemployment help, detox centers and virtual AA and NA meetings.

On Wednesdays and Saturdays at 11 a.m., The Recovery Clinic on Facebook hosts a live conversation, offering support, recovery information and an array of resources.

“There are a lot of really great things happening in our community bringing people together,” said Haddock.

Haddock said it’s important to remember that recovery doesn’t stop because of this pandemic, and help is always available.

“Take care of yourself, eat right, have a routine and reach out for help,” said Haddock. “Don’t make that a barrier just because of the pandemic.”

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