Addiction is now known to be a disease and the ADA recognizes addiction as a protected class of disability. According to the ADA Manual, “A former drug addict may be protected under the ADA because the addiction may be considered a substantially limiting impairment”.

Abuse of illegal drugs and alcohol, plus legally prescribed medications, continue to escalate out of control. East Tennessee and Southwest Virginia are among the top two areas of the country for drug abuse and misuse. For most addicts, recovery is a long process that requires a safe and protected residential environment plus supportive services.

While detox (3 to 7 days) and short-term (28 days) residential treatment facilities serve a critical need, the recovery process usually takes 12 to 24 months. Recovery is difficult if the individual returns to their bad environment or becomes homeless, which explains the extremely high recidivism rate for short-term treatment.

Woodridge, Mountain States Health Alliance’s detox and stabilization facility, currently assists more than 300 individuals each month with detox and stabilization services. Unfortunately these patients are forced to return to the environment that typically caused their problem. Bristol Lifestyle Recovery will accept qualified applicants referred to the program from Woodridge and other local detoxing programs. People from the Bristol area will have first priority to an open bed from these referrals. Fairview’s 15-year history has proven that providing a long-term sober living environment, plus assisting with LifeStyle changes in a controlled community, enables people to regain control of their lives and become productive citizens.

Frontier Health’s Magnolia Ridge has worked with Fairview and Manna House for many years for placement of individuals exiting the Magnolia Ridge 28-day residential addiction program. Affordable long-term recovery at Manna House is limited to 24 beds, which is a miniscule percentage of the current need.

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