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Addiction services take precedence in Maryland agency

November 22, 2017
by Gary A. Enos, Editor
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As the opioid crisis rages in many communities, there is evidence that some organizations are diverting attention from other healthcare issues to addiction services. One example can be found in Harford County, Md., where The Baltimore Sun reported this week that the agency Family and Children's Services will use funds from a closing adult day care program to support addiction and mental health treatment.

Family and Children's Services announced earlier this month that its 30-year-old Medical Adult Day Care program at Harford Community College will close Dec. 8 because of declining enrollment and weak local support. The program offered medical services for seniors who do not need nursing home care but are too frail to function in a senior center environment.

“With things going on in the county, particularly around chronic substance abuse, opiate abuse issues, we have an opportunity to have more impact in Bel Air and Harford County by putting those resources into the behavioral health and case management services that we do,” said F.B. Burden, CEO of Family and Children's Services.

The agency is applying to the state to expand its Harford behavioral health programming as a licensed outpatient mental health facility, which would extend opportunities for addiction counseling and other services.