City of Rifle asked to financially support regional detox center in Glenwood Springs
Rifle City Council questioned just how much use the city will get out of a Glenwood Springs detox center if they decide to financially support it.
During a March 2 workshop, city council members asked Mind Springs Health officials how many people in Rifle will use the facility, will it support veterans healthcare and how much it is going to cost.
Mind Springs Health, a nonprofit that offers mental health services throughout the Western Slope, currently has plans to open a six-bed regional drug and alcohol detoxification center in Glenwood Springs.
“What we’re looking at is — from the individual communities and the county and the hospitals — funding for the operational side of this program,” Mind Springs Health Interim CEO Doug Pattison said.
So far, the city of Glenwood Springs has budgeted $200,000 for the detox center, while Mind Springs Health Interim CEO Doug Pattison told city Council that Garfield County has applied for nearly $700,000 in grants.
But when Rifle City Council asked Mind Springs Health officials how much funding the city needed to put forth, they couldn’t offer an exact answer.
“We’re still crunching the numbers and looking at numbers from community members,” Mind Springs Foundation President Roger Sheffield said. “We’d like to come back in the next couple weeks and lay this out.”
Currently, Rifle residents needing substance abuse treatment are taken to the emergency room. The Rifle Police Department either calls an ambulance or personally takes anyone in need of treatment to the emergency room at Grand River Health, Rifle City Manager Tommy Klein said on Tuesday.
Klein said having and supporting a detox center in Glenwood Springs would help people with substance abuse issues and also alleviate traffic at the hospital as well.
“I think it’s cost sharing, and we would benefit just as much as other municipalities would,” Klein, Rifle’s former police chief, said. “It’s a regional effort, and it’s expensive to operate a facility like this.”
On March 2, Grand River Health Chief Nursing Officer Stacy Kopich said out of the 277 people diagnosed with substance use disorder in 2021, 160 people came from Rifle.
“It’s predominantly people from Rifle,” she said.
The high numbers also prompted council to ask who would pay for treatment of the uninsured.
Right now, the average length of stay is 3-5 days, Pattison said. The daily rate for someone’s stay is $800, including detox and additional treatment services.
During the workshop, Mind Springs officials presented several gaps in detox services expected for individuals supported by Medicaid, which does not cover all expenses.
Council member Brian Condie said he’s been in the county long enough to know the detox services are needed, but expressed concerns over cost sharing.
“We’re not charging (people) anything to cover this gap,” he said. “So it’s Club Med for them.”
Reporter Ray K. Erku can be reached at 612-423-5273 or email@example.com
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