“I don’t think she was a lost cause”: How one Colorado overdose victim fell through the cracks

April 14, 2024

By: Meg Wingerter

People who have both a mental illness and a substance-use disorder often struggle to get treatment that addresses all their needs, because most providers still primarily focus on one or the other, said Vincent Atchity, president and CEO of Mental Health Colorado. Mental health facilities often won’t admit people in active addiction, he said.

The Denver area needs more “housing first” options, which get people off the street even if they aren’t ready to stop using drugs immediately, said Atchity, of Mental Health Colorado. Offering wraparound services where people live increases the odds they’ll agree to start treatment and be able to stick with it, he said.

“Nobody gets well when they don’t know where they’re going to sleep tonight,” he said.

Read the full article in Colorado Politics