Pleus felt compelled to start an awareness and advocacy organization, Truth Pharm, which has made its way to the national front. They work to raise awareness, reduce stigma, and advocate for programs and policy changes. They have enrolled four police agencies to date in the Gloucester Angel Program, have gotten many people into treatment, and are providing Community Response Action Plans across upstate New York.
“We, like many others, believe the solution to this epidemic is multi-faceted. However, we believe the time for action is now… It isn’t time for a band aid. It’s time for a tourniquet,” she says.
Pleus says what is needed from our lawmakers now is:
1. Humane, medically assisted detox.
2. Same day evaluations.
3. Immediate access to treatment.
4. To require insurers to pay for the type and length of treatment known to be effective.
5. To increase insurance reimbursement rates so that treatment centers can afford to open and operate in New York.
“Everything else is ancillary and can wait. But, we cannot wait for these things,” she adds.
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