Word is getting out among drug addicts that there’s help available through a new service based in Baraboo. But not enough people in the community know more support is needed to free Sauk County from heroin’s grip.
“It’s not just in Madison, it’s not just in Milwaukee, it’s in Sauk County,” case manager Andy Schmitz said.
He’s one of four specialists working for Tellurian at a Baraboo office that opened in March. After winning a $1 million federal grant, Sauk County’s Department of Human Services hired Tellurian to operate a treatment program for people addicted to heroin and pain pills.
Demand for service was illustrated when supervisor Erin Tiedeman fielded more than a dozen calls one of the first days the office was open. She has noticed some parts of the county are underserved, and there remains an urgent need for psychiatric care, housing, inpatient services and support from local doctors. “There are these gaps that we’re noticing,” she said.
The Sauk County Medication-Assisted Treatment program is designed to complement existing services, such as the Pauquette Center for Psychological Services and the St. Clare Center. Like the Community Activated Recovery Enhancement program already operating in Sauk Prairie, as well as a similar program administered by the Ho-Chunk House of Wellness, the new program uses medication and personalized care to help addicts recover.
“It’s something that’s sustainable,” Schmitz said. “This is something that will take them away from that (addiction) and allow them to heal.”