If you have a general practitioner (doctor you see regularly) you can and should ask them if they are an OBAT (Office-based Addiction Treatment doctor) or, if they are not, whether they know of a local/recommended OBAT.
If you have insurance, you can call the number on your insurance card for a referral; Paterson COAR recommends taking referrals for OBAT doctors, not local treatment providers unless they are otherwise vetted for efficacy.
If you do not have a trusted doctor or insurance, or have not received help from either resource, Paterson COAR recommends the following options:
(For an emergency, meaning you are about to experience withdrawal and do not want to wait for relief)
- St. Joseph's Emergency Department is open 24/7 and will initiate (i.e. start) you on Suboxone if you are in active withdrawal. They will connect you with the St. Joseph's Addiction Medicine Office for ongoing maintenance (i.e. continuation of your medication, as guided by a doctor).
(In circumstances where you can wait a few days before initiating your treatment)
- St. Joseph's Addiction Medicine Office is located at 11 Getty Avenue, 2nd Floor. The office is open Wednesdays from 8 am to 12 pm and can initiate and maintain you on Suboxone. You can call any time to make an appointment, and if you get their voicemail, they will call you back. Call 973-569-6000.
- Tier1 Recovery is located in Paterson's 4th Ward at 147 Montgomery Street. Tier1 is open for appointments throughout the week from 9 am to 5 pm and can initiate and maintain you on Suboxone. Their team is very flexible with scheduling and provides additional counseling and spiritual support alongside treatment. Call 973-782-6726.
- Paterson Counseling Center (PCC) is located downtown at 319 Main Street. PCC is open for appointments throughout the week. PCC is the best option for those choosing to take Methadone, as opposed to Suboxone. You can call any time to make an appointment, and if you do not have an ID or insurance, you must ask for support from their mobile unit. Call 973-523-8316 x7244.
- Crossroads of Paterson is located downtown at 66 Hamilton Street, Suite 204. Crossroads is open for appointments throughout the week and supports a 24/7 call center. You can call any time to make an appointment; ask for the "Paterson Center" when calling. They have tele-doc options available to support initiation or maintenance. Call 800-805-6989.
Please Note: The above referrals are subject to change and will be updated as appropriate. Our team takes referrals and partner vetting seriously and will only recommend programs where the policies and scientific practice of medically-assisted treatment corresponds with updated findings in addiction science.
You can not safely begin medication for addiction treatment if you are high. If you begin using Suboxone too early, it will make you feel sick. Therefore, doctors use a "COWS Score" to check your body for a variety of physical cues which determine whether you are ready to take medication responsibly and without discomfort.
Buprenorphine is the active ingredient in Suboxone. Suboxone is the brand name for buprenorphine that adds in an extra 2 mg of naloxone.
Naloxone is a medicine that rapidly reverses an opioid overdose. It is an opioid antagonist. This means that it attaches to opioid receptors and reverses and blocks the effects of other opioids.
Paterson COAR and the ORT partner with the Passaic County HopeOne Van which provides free naloxone and training on how to use it. Find their schedule here.
In October 2022, the Paterson Health and Human Services Department, as well as Paterson's first responders, will be equipped with free naloxone that can be requested when needed. You can request naloxone and/or naloxone training directly through our Contact page.
Yes, naloxone is the active ingredient in Narcan. Narcan is a common brand name for naloxone.
Yes. Families with loved ones who struggle with opioid addiction should have naloxone nearby and let friends know where it is. People should still call 911 immediately in the events of an overdose.
Naloxone can be given as a nasal spray or it can be injected into the muscle, under the skin, or into the veins. Naloxone should be given to any person who shows signs of an overdose or when an overdose is suspected. Ideally, naloxone should be administered by a trained individual.
Signs of an opioid overdose include the following:
- Pinpoint (very small) pupils;
- Slow or shallow breathing;
- Faint heartbeat;
- Pale skin.
All overdoses are NOT the same. An overdose on a stimulant like Cocaine would potentially have some of the same signs like difficulty breathing and loss of consciousness, but unlike an opioid overdose, might also have: chest pain, dizziness, foaming at the mouth, racing pulse, and seizures.
Harm Reduction, as a general concept, includes the tactics, strategies, and resources that can be applied to reduce harm or likelihood of death while engaging in a variety of activities. So, in relation to drug use, it means understanding what can increase or decrease your risk of experiencing overdose.
Ways to decrease the risk of overdose include:
- Testing a smaller amount of the drug for fentanyl before using (and avoiding use if fentanyl is present);
- Using with someone else, ideally someone who has naloxone and knows how to use it;
- Using less if you haven't used in some time.
Ways to increase risk of overdose include:
- Using too much, especially after you have not used in some time;
- Using alone;
- Mixing opioids with alcohol, other pills or cocaine;
- Other health issues (HIV, liver/kidney/heart disease/asthma);
- Previous overdose;
- Age (older individuals and those with longer histories of drug use are more likely to die as a result of an overdose).
Peer Support Work is performed by trained individuals who have been successful in the recovery process and want to help others experiencing similar situations. Through shared understanding, respect, and mutual empowerment, peer support workers help people become and stay engaged in the recovery process and reduce the likelihood of relapse. Peer support services can effectively extend the reach of treatment beyond the clinical setting into the everyday environment of those seeking a successful, sustained recovery process.
Pairing treatment with peer support is considered an evidence-based practice by multiple addiction and justice-related authorities in the United States. Peer support workers engage in a wide range of activities, including:
- Advocating for people in recovery;
- Sharing resources and building skills;
- Building community and relationships;
- Leading recovery groups;
- Mentoring and setting goals;
- Providing services and/or relevant trainings;
- Supervising other peers;
- Developing resources for the community;
- Administering programs or agencies;
- Educating the public and policymakers on addiction and recovery needs.
Paterson COAR recommends seeking support from a Certified Peer Recovery Specialist for yourself or a loved one that is seeking treatment. This title indicates that the peer has completed xx hours of formal, curricula-based training, as well as xx hours of field work. Here are the trusted resources for Peer Support Services we recommend that support those recovering in the Paterson, NJ area:
- Prevention is Key (PIK) CARES: If you live or work in Passaic County, ask for Kelly and note that you are seeking “Peer Services.” They can provide virtual or in-person counseling support. Call 973-625-1143.
- PEERS Program at Mainstream Recovery: If you live in Passaic County, ask for Sheila and note that you are seeking "Peer Services." They can provide virtual or in-person counseling support. Call 732-887-6315.
Commonly used opioids include: