Addictions centre a positive addition to Harbour Grace, says residents

Melissa Jenkins
Published on February 27, 2014
Supporters of the centre, and also active volunteers in the Carbonear-Harbour Grace area, take a look at the posters of the new facility layout. They are, from left, Kathleen Mercer, Kerri Abbott, Stacy Harris and Terri Whyte.
Photo by Melissa Jenkins

There was nothing but support at a Harbour Grace meeting at the firefighters’ social building Feb. 26 as Eastern Health officials presented details on the new adult addictions treatment centre that is in the works for the town.


More than 50 residents turned out for a presentation about the new facility, and for the opportunity to ask questions. The facility will be located at the SPLASH centre on Lady Lake Road (formerly St. Paul’s School).

The meeting began with a rundown of Eastern Health, and its position with healthcare in the province.

 It quickly turned to details on addiction, offered programs and how the new facility will fit into it.

“The program (at the new facility) is expected to be part of a continuum,” explained Cindy Clarke, the program manager for the centre.

She described the centre as only a part of recovery for a patient, and said all services the Mental Health and Addictions department within Eastern Health can be available for those who need it before, or after, going to the treatment facility. This includes Opioid treatment centres (Methadone cliniics), the adolescent program offered at the Rowan Centre in St. John’s, the recovery centre and Humberwood addictions centre in Corner Brook.

The program is strictly voluntary, and must be referred by either a physician or an addictions services office – there is one in Bay Roberts and one in Harbour Grace.

Some residents asked questions after the presentation, but nothing was negative. Everyone appeared anxious to have the facility built and open because of the strong need in the town.

It’s something this town needs, said one resident. It was echoed by another.

The facility will bring 30 new jobs to the area – 20 clinical staff and 10 administrative. It will be staffed 24 hours a day, and a security checkpoint will be located at the main entrance.

Once the meeting was over, those in attendance were given the opportunity to take a pamphlet and view posters on display.

Each poster showed the final look and layout of the two-storey facility, which received a positive response from those in attendance. The layout will include 18 patient beds lining the perimeter of the upstairs floor, and offices and medical-related rooms in the centre.

The downstairs will have group therapy rooms, doctors’ offices and the gymnasium.

It will be approximately 25,000 square feet, and will be a “renovation project.”

The cost was not readily available because tenders for the project closed earlier this month. It could take 60 days before a contract is awarded.

The entire project is expected to be completed sometime in 2015.