Effective Opioid Treatment in San Francisco
In the U.S., at least two million people are suffering from opioid use disorders. Although California is not on the top of many states with high overdose deaths, the epidemic still rages there. Walking down the streets of San Francisco, one might come across used syringes. These scattered needles are indicative of the current opioid epidemic.
In 2014, prescription opiates killed more people than heroin. However, heroin is now especially prevalent in San Francisco, with an estimated 22,000 people currently using it. Each year, heroin use and opioid addiction only worsen. Injecting heroin is the fastest way to feel the drug’s effects, but it is also the riskiest method of use. Not only is the risk of overdose substantially increased, but there are additional medical risks, including HIV and hepatitis C.
In 2016, the San Francisco Department of Health released a report showing naloxone decreased overdose deaths and emergency room visits. Primary care physicians began prescribing naloxone alongside opiate painkillers as a preventive measure for long-term chronic pain patients. In particular, patients that received naloxone had an average of 47% fewer ER visits for opioid-related issues.
Naloxone is also available at pharmacies without a prescription. Also, the health department decided to provide naloxone training to librarians. Their goal was to ensure that those who were likely to witness an overdose would intervene. As of 2016, the number of lives saved from naloxone almost doubled.
Will San Francisco Be the First U.S. City to Offer Safe Injection Sites?
Public health officials are attempting to reduce the city’s medical costs and harm due to dirty needles. Therefore, they want to implement safe injection sites by July 2018. They believe that approximately 85% of IV heroin users would utilize safe injection sites. These sites would provide access to medical and social services as well.
Furthermore, the open use of heroin on San Francisco streets prompted most citizens to vote for the bill. A recent poll found that 67% backed the bill. Many of those not in favor of the idea feel that it supports illegal drug use.
Rapid Detox in San Francisco
San Francisco provides many social services and bases much of its treatment on harm reduction methods. This method’s goal is less about recovery and more about reducing the health risks associated with drug use. Some examples include safe injection sites and Medical Assisted Treatment (MAT).
Most rehabs and outpatient addiction providers offer MAT. This type of treatment includes using opioid replacement drugs such as methadone and buprenorphine-based drugs, like Suboxone. Physicians prescribe these drugs at inpatient or outpatient facilities to stop cravings and withdrawal symptoms from other opioids such as heroin or oxycodone. Patients then have the option of remaining on these replacement drugs long-term or weaning down slowly. These drugs are opioids themselves. Therefore they too have substantial side effects and withdrawal symptoms when patients attempt to quit.
This form of treatment is not adequate for those wanting to become opioid-free. Individuals taking painkillers such as oxycodone are likely to experience less severe withdrawal symptoms than from taking Suboxone. This means that tapering off oxycodone can actually be easier than tapering off Suboxone. In conclusion, maintenance treatment can be counterproductive for many patients, leaving them in a hopeless dependence cycle.
Is there a Rapid Detox Center in Northern California?
Finding a Rapid Detox near San Francisco
For those seeking the highest quality of medical care and the safest opioid detox available, Waismann Method is the first choice. We use the latest medical science to treat opioid dependence as a medical condition. For 20 years, we have maintained our international reputation as one of the most successful opioid detox facilities.
The quadruple board-certified medical director treats patients in their private ICU rooms in a full-service, accredited hospital. Before any detox procedure, patients receive a comprehensive pre-examination, assessment, and individualized treatment plan. The medical director always adapts his treatment plan to each patient’s individual medical, physiological, and emotional needs.
Lastly, staff transfer clients to our exclusive recovery center, Domus Retreat, for additional care. Clients receive clock support, individual psychotherapy, and holistic services such as massage and yoga during their stay. These services assist in physical and emotional recovery, which increases the chances of living a successful, opioid-free life.
- Overdose Reports in San Francisco 2020 to 2021
- SF sees more overdose deaths than COVID