After long wait, addictions treatment centre opens in Harbour Grace

Officials from Eastern Health and the provincial government were on hand on Thursday for the opening of a long awaited adult addictions treatment centre in Harbour Grace.
The Grace Centre, a new adults addictions treatment centre, has opened its doors in Harbour Grace. (Keith Burgess/CBC)

Officials from Eastern Health and the provincial government were on hand on Thursday for the opening of a long-awaited adult addictions treatment centre in Harbour Grace.

The Grace Centre will provide treatment for adults dealing with complex alcohol and drug addictions, and will be the next step for many clients who have already received treatment elsewhere but require more comprehensive support.

"Most of the adults referred to this facility will have already received addiction services in the community, but because of the severity of their addiction, they require more intensive treatment and monitoring to achieve their goals," said Collette Smith, vice-president of clinical services for Eastern Health.

The facility is designed specifically to help those who require intensive addiction services, so that they can receive them in a safe, home-like environment.

18 beds at centre

Officials said the new facility will offer a holistic approach, and offers 18 beds and inclusive medical, educational and therapeutic services for all clients. 

Referrals to the program can come from anywhere in Newfoundland and Labrador. 

The new treatment centre also includes a gymnasium and fitness area, music and art therapy rooms, and a lounge and entertainment space.

Cindy Clarke, the new facility's program director, says the new centre will be instrumental in helping those suffering from addiction get the treatment they need. (Keith Burgess/CBC)

Cindy Clarke, the program manager for the Grace Centre, said the program will help clients get the support they need, and aid them in establishing a self-care routine they can take with them when they complete the program.

"We really encourage them to get back into the routine of self-care, and having pride in who they are and their space," said Clarke.

"The overall goal here is to help those who come here to reduce their risk of relapse, while managing their recovery through achieving a healthy, balanced lifestyle."

The average length of stay for each client referred to the treatment facility will be 28 days, but the option remains for clients to stay longer if they are determined to need further care.

Clarke said the program also includes an extensive aftercare support, to ensure that clients are able to stay clean once they exit the program. 

"To help ensure clients have the full access to support upon completing the program, a complete discharge program will be set up, as well as an after-care plan," she said. 

Will begin accepting clients on Monday

Officials with Eastern Health said the Grace Centre is designed to help individuals suffering from addiction develop a strong self-care routine to take with them when they exit treatment. (Keith Burgess/CBC)

The Grace Centre is the second centre of its kind in Newfoundland and Labrador, joining Humberwood in Corner Brook.

Health Minister John Haggie said that now that the Grace Centre has opened, building a new mental health facility to replace the aging Waterford Hospital in St. John's is a top priority.

"The construction of a new mental health facility to replace the Waterford Hospital remains a priority and will proceed without delay," said Haggie.

The Grace Centre will begin accepting its first clients on Monday.