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April’s Sobering Statistics – HCRS Addresses Alcohol Awareness Month

As we enter National Alcohol Awareness Month this April, HCRS acknowledges the critical need to address the pervasive issue of alcohol misuse and addiction, both nationally and within our local community.

The statistics are stark: according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), excessive alcohol use claims over 95,000 lives in the United States annually, ranking it as the third leading preventable cause of death. Furthermore, the economic burden of alcohol-related issues amounts to nearly $250 billion each year. These figures underscore the urgent need for concerted efforts to combat alcohol misuse as a public health concern.

Closer to home, recent data from VT Digger indicates that Vermont continues to struggle with high rates of binge drinking and alcohol use disorder, reflecting a pressing need for comprehensive support and resources within our communities.

In response to these sobering statistics, HCRS reaffirms its commitment to providing essential resources and support for individuals grappling with alcohol addiction and misuse. Through our range of comprehensive programs and services, we strive to offer accessible and effective treatment options tailored to meet the diverse needs of each individual.

Our CEO, George Karabakakis, Ph.D., stresses the importance of addressing alcohol misuse and addiction within our community, noting, “In recent years, the spotlight has been on the critical challenge of opioid overdoses, but alcohol use disorder remains a significant concern. National Alcohol Awareness month is a great reminder that we need to create greater awareness of this preventable issue.’”

At HCRS, we offer a variety of resources for alcohol use and addiction, including counseling services, support groups, and specialized treatment programs. Individuals seeking assistance or guidance are encouraged to visit our website at www.hcrs.org for more information on available resources and how to access support.

We’re also excited to announce the launch of Vermont’s new Mobile Crisis services, providing in-person responses for both mental health and substance use crises. Vermonters can access this program through www.GetHelpVT.org or by calling 988. Spearheaded by HCRS in partnership with other community mental health agencies across the state, this enhanced crisis service represents a significant step forward in supporting individuals during times of need.

George expresses his enthusiasm for this enhanced service, adding, “HCRS has been instrumental in the development and implementation of Mobile Crisis services across the State. This two-person, in-person response model is a best practice that is reshaping how community members are supported during substance use and mental health crises.”

This National Alcohol Awareness Month, let us join together to raise awareness and promote education about alcohol misuse and addiction. By working collectively, we can make a meaningful impact in the lives of those affected by this widespread issue.

For individuals in southeastern Vermont seeking alcohol services, please reach out to HCRS by calling one of our toll-free lines: Hartford area: (855) 220-9430, Springfield area: (855) 220-9429, or Brattleboro area: (855) 220-9428. Additionally, you can find more information on our website at www.HCRS.org.