The Herald’s Nov. 16 headline article on delays to the opening of a Rutland methodone clinic confirmed my impression, based on previous news reports, that Rutland had been very close to having a methodone clinic up and running: the necessary resources, physical and financial, for a clinic capable of serving up to 200 clients had been pulled together.
But the article seemed to say that the state Dept. of Health, because it wanted something bigger, was able to block the planned project. (I can only guess how this could happen — perhaps by withholding approval, perhaps by withholding promised financial support. If the latter, Dr. Harry Chen’s remark, quoted in the article, that the project hit the rocks because of financial issues, has a certain hollow ring.) And this setback to the methodone clinic reminded me of two sayings: “Half a loaf is better than none at all” and “Don’t let the best be the enemy of the good.”
In any case, I share the concern of Rutland City Police Chief James Baker that this is an important lost opportunity. As he notes, there are numerous folks out there who need the help that such a clinic would provide; I might also add that having a clinic up and running would enable development of links to other, related community services as part of building a coordinated approach to one of Rutland’s more serious problems.
Hopefully this setback won’t plague ongoing efforts to establish the badly-needed methodone clinic.
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