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A New Hope for Women with Addictions - Taunton Hospital

Governor Baker joined by his administration in opening of extended addictions facility at Taunton State Hospital

A New Hope for Women with Addictions - Taunton Hospital

Department of Mental Health Commissioner Mikula gives remarks

The second phase of the Women’s Recovery from Addictions Program (WRAP) in Taunton opened in July, 2016 officially closing the chapter on the day when women with substance use disorders are sent to prison for treatment. State officials who recently toured the new unit including Governor Baker, Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, Secretary of Health and Human Services Marylou Sudders, Secretary of Administration and Finance Kristin Lepore, DMH Commissioner Joan Mikula, marveled at the progress that was long overdue.

Standing in the crisp and clean lounge of the new unit, state officials talked of the hard work that went into budgeting, planning, and construction to make the program a reality.

“I have never seen such an example of good government at work. This is nothing short of astounding” said Mikula.

The new unit includes 30 new treatment beds, a dining room, a day room, a lounge, a fitness room, offices, a secure intake area, and secure outdoor recreation areas. The renovations, which restored and enhanced the once dilapidated building, cost approximately $15 million. This program also brings 130 new jobs at the facility to Taunton.

The first phase of the Woman’s Recovery from Addictions Program was opened in February of this year with 15 treatment beds. Since then, 44 women have been served by the team at WRAP.

A New Hope for Women with Addictions - Taunton Hospital

Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders delivers remarks on opening

“Seventy-five percent of women treated and discharged continue in treatment to this day and have not relapsed,” said Sudders.

She attributed this success to the resources available to the women through the program. WRAP provides the women with recovery specialists who are in recovery. The specialists work with the women once they are discharged so they have someone they can immediately contact for support.

Secretary Lepore made a point of thanking the leadership of the Massachusetts Caucus of Women Legislators and the Division of Capital Asset Management and Maintenance (DCAMM) who were instrumental in ensuring the program moved forward and was completed on time.

“Great policy drove the decision making process in the budget. It shows how important it is to the administration to address the opioid epidemic,” said Lepore.

The Commonwealth made a commitment 30 years ago to provide better treatment for women with addictions than imprisonment at MCI Framingham. Governor Baker recalled being appalled when he learned about the practice.

A New Hope for Women with Addictions - Taunton Hospital

Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito takes tour of newly opened addictions facility at Taunton State Hospital

“This is long overdue,” said Baker who took a time away from the tour to sit and talk with some of the women in the program. “I wish I could apologize to the people who weren’t able to take advantage of this.”

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