BLOG: Opiate and Heroin Epidemic: Prevention, Treatment and Recovery Options are Available Locally

Categories: Blog, Featured News

The opiate and heroin epidemic continues to grow and the number of overdose deaths are climbing each year. More and more Stark County residents are looking for prevention, education, treatment and recovery support options. Stark County Mental Health & Addiction Recovery (StarkMHAR) staff often receive calls inquiring about service options within our community. There are many options available that are funded fully or in-part by StarkMHAR. The resources below highlight services and information people can access regardless of their ability to pay and based on a sliding fee schedule. (Learn more about StarkMHAR Care Network ».)

Prevention and Education

  • Drug Take Back Day – Drug Take Back Day is typically held in the fall at locations across the county, in conjunction with the Stark County Police Chief’s Association, Tri-County Waste Management District, Mercy and Aultman Hospitals, Republic Steel and Vail Packaging. Community members can drop off unwanted, unused medications for free that will be disposed in an environmentally safe manner.
  • Drug Collection Boxes » Community members can drop off their unwanted, unused medication at local law enforcement agencies year-round for safe disposal.
  • Project DAWN » Crisis Intervention and Recovery Center and CommQuest Services provides Naloxone (Narcan®) kits to people directly at risk or family/friends of those at risk of overdose.
  • SAFE HOMe – New opiate abuse prevention curriculum specifically developed to target elementary, middle and high school youth.
  • Addiction Recovery Nurse Navigator – Crisis Intervention and Recovery Center hired a nurse to work specifically with people who are addicted and their natural supports to help them navigate the system and provide education and linkages to needed resources.
  • Opiate Hotline – Crisis Intervention and Recovery Center operates the hotline 24/7/365 to provide education and linkages to any one calling in for help at 330-454-4357.
  • Opiate Task Force » Monthly meeting of organizations and community members dedicated to addressing the opiate epidemic in Stark County.
  • Opiate Tool Kit » Resources for parents, youth and educators.
  • Drug Free Stark County » Community coalition about substance abuse prevention and community education and awareness.
  • Opiate Symposium – Annual conference and call to action centering around the opiate epidemic. Once the 2017 date is announced, registration will be available at our Training Center ».


Treatment/Recovery Supports »

  • Inpatient Detox – Crisis Intervention and Recovery Center operates an inpatient Canton facility with 11 beds open 24/7/365.
  • Ambulatory Detox – CommQuest Services manages ReCOR, an ambulatory detox facility in Massillon with 16 beds.
  • Residential Treatment – CommQuest operates a male residential treatment facility in Massillon and a female residential treatment facility in Canton.
  • Medication Assisted Treatment/Recovery – CommQuest utilizes a variety of Medication Assisted Treatment options such as methadone, Suboxone® and Vivitrol® in conjunction with intensive or outpatient counseling treatment services.
  • Outpatient Counseling, Case Management, Peer Support – Crisis Intervention and Recovery Center, CommQuest and Stark County TASC are funded providers offering these services.
  • Mobile Vivitrol® Program – CommQuest operates this program for inmates at the Stark County Jail or the Stark Regional Community Corrections Center which allows people to receive their first Vivitrol® injection before leaving the facility.
  • Jail Liaison – Stark County TASC and Coleman both provide a Jail Liaison who can assist the person who is incarcerated with linkages into treatment or other needed community resources prior to being discharged.
  • Recovery Court – Canton Municipal Court recently began this specialized docket focusing on addiction and with services being provided by CommQuest.


Examples of Treatment Services/Recovery Supports that are being developed with local providers

Stark County Mental Health and Addiction Recovery knows with the opiate and heroin epidemic growing more services options will be helpful to meet the increased demand. To that end, StarkMHAR is working in conjunction with several providers to offer additional and/or expanded service options in our community.

  • 23-Hour Observation Beds – Crisis Intervention and Recovery Center will operate 23-hour observation beds to help determine the best path for withdrawal and recovery.
  • Inpatient Detox Beds in Alliance – CommQuest is exploring the addition of inpatient detox beds in the Alliance area.
  • Recovery Housing Assistance – Funded treatment providers will be able to refer individuals transitioning out of a residential treatment bed to contracted recovery housing.
  • Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion (LEAD) – Stark County TASC is working with the Canton City Police Department and the Stark County Prosecutor’s Office to be able to assist with immediate treatment linkages when a person is diverted from arrest due to the Good Samaritan’s Law.
  • Expansion of ReCOR and Medication Assisted Treatment/Recovery hours with CommQuest.
  • Addition of another treatment provider for Medication Assisted Treatment – Vivitrol®.
  • Peer Supporters available to local Emergency Departments and Emergency Medical Services in overdose situations to assist with treatment linkages and navigation.
  • Additional female residential treatment beds in the Massillon area through CommQuest.
  • Expanding the number and locations of drug collection boxes.

Many other prevention, education, treatment and recovery support options also exist in Stark County that are not funded by StarkMHAR. Explore additional information and resources for medical professionals as well as families »

If you have any questions or are interested in getting involved with the Opiate Task Force », please contact Fran Gerbig, Health and Wellness Manager, at or Allison Esber, Systems Initiatives Manager, at or 330-455-6644.

About Michele Boone

Michele Boone, MA, LPCC-S, CDCA is the Director of Clinical Services at Stark County Mental Health & Addiction Recovery. She is a certified trainer in the Transition to Independence Process Model, Mental Health First Aid for Adults and also Public Safety, as well as How Being Trauma-Informed Improves Criminal Justice System Responses. Michele brings 22 years of experience providing various levels of management/administration for both for-profit and non-profit entities. She has worked in the behavioral health field for 18 years implementing evidenced-based/evidence-supported programming within the Stark County community.