Each One, Teach One! –
Nov. 20, 2018 – “Some people are good at writing. Some people are good at public speaking,” Blake said. “I’m a good doctor. And I feel like that’s where I can fill a role to help with this epidemic.” Before her current job, Blake was already working half-time at an OB-GYN clinic that helps pregnant women get into addiction care. She also had the credentials to prescribe buprenorphine — which, under federal law, requires a special training course. So when the new opportunity opened up at the needle exchange, Blake jumped at it.
“I was able to quickly move into the role,” she said. “And I felt really compelled to try and do something.” The program exemplifies the kind of innovative steps that Vermont, which has already done a lot to confront the opioid crisis, is pursuing as it continues its expansion of addiction care. While many states — and parts of Vermont — are still working to expand basic addiction treatment, the Burlington needle exchange shows that there are other possibilities to make addiction treatment as accessible as possible to those most in need of it.