Mayor Walters Announces Quick Response Team, First in Summit County

Jan 11, 2017

On Wednesday, January 11, 2017, Mayor Don Walters, along with Police Chief Jack Davis and Fire Chief Paul Moledor, announced that the City of Cuyahoga Falls will be the first community in Summit County to utilize Quick Response Teams in an effort to combat drug-related overdoses in the city. This effort is a collaboration with the Summit County ADM Board and Oriana House, Inc. The Quick Response Team program will begin on Tuesday, January 17, 2017.

“We have been working hard to identify those in our community that have addictions, we know who they are, and we are going to their homes to offer resources for them to get treatment. Neighbors can rest assured that we remain committed to finding innovative ways to combat opiate addiction in our neighborhoods,” stated Mayor Don Walters. “Our officers were the first in Summit County to carry the life-saving opiate-reversing drug Narcan, and I am proud that we are the first city in Summit County to provide our residents with resources and support through the Quick Response Team.”

“The ADM Board is committed to implementing innovative programs aimed at greatly reducing the opiate epidemic and is pleased to partner with the Cuyahoga Falls community to start the quick response team (QRT) program”, stated Jerry Craig, Executive Director of the ADM Board.  “I am encouraged by the outcomes achieved by others using QRT where both opiate-related overdoses were reduced and the number of people with addictions connecting with treatment greatly increased. We anticipate achieving similar positive outcomes.”

 “The Quick Response Team gives us an opportunity to be the starting point of recovery as we continue to focus on education, prevention, enforcement, and treatment to potentially reduce the instances of overdoses in our city,” said Police Chief Jack Davis

“This is an all-hands on approach to helping individuals and families that are struggling with addiction,” remarked Fire Chief Paul Moledor. “We will meet the individuals where they are in the process so that they know we are invested, as a community, in getting them treatment.”

The continual rise in overdoses has prompted city and community leaders to form a coalition to pro-actively help individuals in the community that are struggling with substance abuse. A team that includes a police officer, firefighter, and treatment counselor will visit the homes of local individuals who have recently survived an overdose. The Quick Response Team will knock on doors and meet with individuals and family members to provide them with an Opiate Addiction Recovery Resource Guide that details crisis services, outpatient and inpatient resources, information regarding residential treatment facilities, and recovery support services that are available. Also included in the guide is support information for the family members and concerned friends of addicted persons. The resource guides are provided and funded by the ADM Board.

Addiction Hotline and ADM Crisis Hotline contact information will also be provided for the individuals to voluntarily call to seek treatment.  Local addiction providers will be linked into the Helpline so that the residents can be provided with the first available appointment for assessment. Beyond the home visit, a treatment counselor from Oriana House, Inc. will follow up and stay engaged with the individuals until they are actively engaged in treatment. If the Quick Response Team is unable to make contact with the resident at home, they will leave a note with contact and resource information with the promise of a follow-up visit at a later time.

The Quick Response Team will be visiting homes one day per week with the goals of equipping individuals and families with information and resources that can help and reducing instances of overdoses. The Quick Response Team is modeled after successful efforts that began in Colerain Township, Ohio, in 2015.

For more information regarding addiction recovery services and support, please visit http://www.admboard.org/ or http://www.summitcountyopiatetaskforce.org/. Individuals seeking support may call the ADM Crisis Center 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 330.996.7730 or the Addiction Help Line, Monday through Friday, from 8:30 am to 4:00 pm, at 330.940.1133. They may also text 4hope to 741741.