National Council on Alcoholism: A lifeline for low-income residents
Over the past five years, the statewide substance abuse system has gone back to its roots, returning to a recovery method of care. A $10,000 grant to the National Council on Alcoholism/Lansing Regional Area provides low-income people in our region with treatment for addiction.
“If you have diabetes or high blood pressure, you have to manage those diseases for the rest of your life,” said Pat Wheeler. “With addiction, we’ve been treating it like it’s an acute disease even though it’s chronic. That doesn’t work.”
Wheeler, executive director of NCA’s Lansing region, said people — and insurance companies — looked at a month-long stay in a treatment program as some kind of magic spell. Change is difficult, she said — whether it’s remembering to drink eight glasses of water a day or making a conscious decision not to use a substance.