Dr. Austin Educates on 'Medication Assisted Therapy'


Dr. Austin Educates on 'Medication Assisted Therapy'
Dr. Ken Austin, Chief Medical Officer of Good Samaritan Health and Wellness Center and Jasper Lion.

9/23/2021 ~ by Margo Austin

On September 9th, The Jasper Lions Club was privileged to have Dr. Ken Austin, the Chief Medical Officer of the Good Samaritan Health and Wellness Center present our program.

He began by asking us, "What kind of person do you expect a drug addict to be?"

Reponses were "disheveled, vacant expression, violent, desperate," etc.

Dr. Austin assured us this is not usually the case. Many are people who were prescribed opiates like Oxycodone or Hydrocodone after surgery or for pain, and because the government has been discouraging prescribing of controlled substances, people resort to street drugs like "roxy's" (oxycodone), heroin, methamphetamine, and unfortunately fentanyl.

Fentanyl is 100 times more potent than morphine and is contributing to the rapid increase in overdose deaths in this country. Professional people often find themselves addicted as well. There are more deaths in the US from drug overdose than from motor vehicle accidents and that number is increasing especially worse due to the isolation during the COVID pandemic.

Good Samaritan is offering help to those wishing to rid their lives of substance dependency. They have a program called "Medication Assisted Therapy" or "MAT". This program offers medication, counseling, and group therapy to assist the patient in the process of recovery. They have enrolled over a hundred patients with 68 still active. The program has been very successful in changing many lives.

Dr. Austin says this program has been more gratifying for him than in all the previous 40 years of medical practice he has done as a Cardiologist. The Jasper Lions Club is proud to have "Lion Ken" as a past President and active member of our club.

Call 706-253-4673 or go to goodsamhwc.org for more information.

The Jasper Lions Club meets on the 2nd and 4th Thursdays of each month in Walker Hall at the First Baptist Church of Jasper. For more information, call 706.253.LION (5466) or email us at georgialions@mac.com.