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ABC6: Treatment for people in recovery doesn’t stop during coronavirus pandemic

Via ABC6

COLUMBUS (WSYX/WTTE) — A lot has changed since the coronavirus pandemic broke and it has put many things to a screeching halt to help stop the spread. But some critical services can’t stop, and people need it.

At Central Ohio’s oldest and most comprehensive treatment center, Maryhaven, employees help people and families dealing with addiction and mental illness. But now, many patients are joining group therapy chats or “telehealth” conferences with their health specialist to avoid possibly spreading the coronavirus.

“Over the last couple years I’ve been living here I’ve been using Maryhaven to some extent, which has been huge for my recovery,” said Ethan Kimball who currently is in recovery.

Kimball is adjusting to the new rules of the center since the pandemic, keeping his distance from other patients, and trying to do phone conferences as much as he can. But sometimes he has to come in to get that one-on-one treatment, and he’s glad Maryhaven is still open.

“I think it is very important for it to stay open because I know for me specifically if I didn’t have an outsource to maintain my sobriety, that would just be an excuse to get down and get depressed and look for maybe a substance to numb myself,” said Kimball.

And during this time of uncertainty, many folks might feel that way as they’re in quarantine or isolation. That’s why the Director of Ohio Health Mental Health said there are resources out there to help everyone get through this.

“They should know that it’s fine for them to reach out for help too. People are accepting new patients, they want to engage with folks. This could be an interesting time for particularly someone with substance abuse disorders, alcoholism, to experience withdrawal, and we don’t want you to go through that alone,” said Lori Criss, the Director of Ohio Health Mental Health and Addiction Services.

Maryhaven is one of the few centers in the country where people can come and get help for free. If you want to learn more about how you can get help, visit https://mha.ohio.gov/ or for an immediate response if you’re in a crisis text 741-741 to 4-HOPE.

Watch on ABC6 website