POLICE ASSOCIATION OF NOVA SCOTIA 97 A CALL FOR HELP: WHAT IT TAKESTO GETTREATMENT FOR OPIOIDADDICTION CBC News called 20 drug rehab, detox and referral centres across Nova Scotia to learn more about treatments Originally published on Dec. 8, 2016 by Susan Allen, Angela MacIvor, CBC News Apart from the addict, no one knows the battle with an opioid addiction better than a family member who has been lied to, screamed at, stolen from and left heartbroken.That's why we decided to call drug rehab facilities and detox centres across Nova Scotia, pretending to be a concerned family member. We posed as the mother of "Lindsay," a 21-year-old woman addicted to Dilaudid, and the sister of "Jeff," who is 30 and taking cocaine, Percocet and every other pill imaginable. It turns out, the advice from drug rehab facilities varies drastically. Front-line workers we spoke with were sympathetic and helpful. But the process of finding help is emotionally draining.We started our search by spending several hours scouring the internet to build a list of facilities. Even then, some of the phone numbers we found were out of date. In all, over several days, we called 20 places. We called three types of centres: hospitals and clinics where patients are treated for free; nonprofits that depend on government support, donations and some money from patients; and private facilities that require patients or their families to pay. The initial step: detox First, we wondered: how do we get our loved ones into detox, known in the medical field as withdrawal management? Detox generally means spending about a week in hospital being weaned off drugs, usually aided by medication to ease what can be a painful, unpleasant process. Some front-line workers encouraged us to call every detox centre in the province.We were told to get our loved one into the first spot available. Also, we repeatedly heard that it's usually better to get them out of their own community and away from triggers that could drive the addiction. Most of the private rehab facilities — centres that provide weeks or months of residential care and counselling — won't take you until you've gone through detox.The pricier centres will take care of both detox and rehab. Methadone a better option? Although there is a public detox program in Lunenburg, front-line workers there explained they don't do detox anymore for people on opioids, except in emergency situations. They said there is usually no reason to go that route because it doesn't work.They made it clear methadone is the better option. The public detox centre in Pictou also told us they no longer treat people with opioid addiction.They said we'd have to go to Springhill or get on a waitlist for methadone, an opioid used in some treatments as a substitute for other narcotics. continued A man addicted to opioids injects drugs recently at his home in Halifax. (CBC)