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OpinionEditorial

A promising idea to fight opioids

Peconic Bay Medical Center in Riverhead June 7,

Peconic Bay Medical Center in Riverhead June 7, 2017. Photo Credit: Barry Sloan

Every so often, an idea comes along that is so darn good you wonder why no one had thought of it before.

Such is the case with Peconic Care, a proposed addiction treatment facility that promises to deal with the opioid crisis in a way that exists nowhere else in the country. Its 40-acre campus, pitched for part of the Enterprise Park site in Calverton, would combine world-class research with clinical care such that every patient who comes to Peconic Care for rehabilitation will help add knowledge in this vital field of how the brain deals with addiction. By teaming together, researchers and clinicians hope to discover new treatments and better tailor existing treatments to individual addicts.

Peconic Care was conceived by Andrew Drazan, a former businessman whose vision was inspired by his mother, who died of an overdose of alcohol and pills. He is working with developer The Engel Burman Group and the Northwell Health hospital system, whose renowned director of addictions treatment, Jon Morgenstern, says the facility would be unique in its potential to study the underlying psychosocial and neurophysiological aspects of addiction.

Some details still need to be worked out — site plan and building plan approval from the Town of Riverhead, a formal contract with Northwell Health — but the developer is confident that construction can begin this fall. That’s exciting news, and everyone involved in the approval process thus far is to be commended, and urged to keep the project moving forward.

Peconic Care offers hope — that we can begin to turn the tide of an opioid crisis that has devastated Long Island.

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