AACKWA to to apply as operator of the Cambridge CTS site

Tuesday, May 31, 2022

Today, the Cambridge North Dumfries Ontario Health Team (CND OHT) announced that the Aids Committee of Cambridge, Kitchener, Waterloo & Area (ACCKWA), in collaboration and with the support of the CND OHT and community partners, will complete the application to be the operator for the Consumption and Treatment Services (CTS) that will be implemented in Cambridge.

The statistics around opioid overdose are haunting. Fatal opioid overdoses in Waterloo Region alone increased from 61 in 2019 to 105 in 2020. This is an increase of 58% in one year.

There are many organizations working to provide support to those experiencing harm related to substance use in our community, and the CTS will be one part of a broad network of treatment and health services. ACCKWA is well-positioned to lead this initiative and provide the wrap around supports required at CTS through the Cambridge Multi-Agency Community Space. With the following:

• proof of need,
• proof of concept and,
• addressing this gap in the harm reduction continuum of care and services.

Given the City of Cambridge has endorsed and designated 150 Main as the CTS site, and potential clients’ familiarity with ACCKWA and partners services at this location, we see this as a positive and strong application to the Ministry of Health.

“Consumption and Treatment Services are proven to work, both in saving lives and addressing many community concerns that come with substance use. ACCKWA is already a leader in this space and as a community health partner, we are grateful for their role in preparing the CTS application and potentially leading this life-saving service in our community.” Kristin Kerr, Executive Director, Stonehenge Therapeutic Community and CND OHT Steering Committee Mental Health & Addictions Lead.

“Cambridge Memorial Hospital is fully supportive of ACCKWA’s application to operate the CTS site at 150 Main St. This is a definite gap in the continuum of care for residents within Cambridge and North Dumfries and ACCKWA has both the experience and the expertise to ensure this life saving service is launched. They are familiar with the location and are well connected to refer clients to the care and services they may need.” Patrick Gaskin, President & CEO, Cambridge Memorial Hospital.

“ACCKWA is pleased to lead the CTS application. Our great community partnerships at the Cambridge MACS site are the wrap-around services required by the Ministry for Consumption and Treatment Services. Together, our combined staff and peers are the friendly welcoming team and the human element that make safer consumption and pathways into treatment accessible, improving health and well being for community members who use drugs.” Ruth Cameron, Executive Director, ACCKWA

Consultations with local residents, program participants and businesses, services and establishments in close proximity to the site are forthcoming. Engagement goals include an opportunity provide input and feedback into how best to provide these lifesaving services at the site, while being a good neighbour and community partner.

About the Ontario Health Team
The Cambridge North Dumfries Ontario Health Team (CND OHT) is a collaborative of 30+ health and social service provider agencies from Cambridge, North Dumfries and the Waterloo Region. The CND OHT envisions a community where people access seamless and integrated services to ensure the health and wellbeing of our diverse populations. The Ontario government has introduced Ontario Health Teams to support a connected health care system centred around patients, families and caregivers. Ontario Health Teams will strengthen local services, making it easier for patients to navigate the system and transition between providers. For more information about the CND OHT, please visit cndoht.com.

At ACCKWA, we work toward a future where new HIV, hepatitis C, and sexually-transmitted or blood-borne infections are rare in Waterloo Region. People living with HIV will feel that maintaining health, well-being and full community participation are achievable, realistic goals. Through responsive programming and multi-sectoral collaboration, ACCKWA will:

  • work towards the reduction of HIV, hepatitis C, and other sexually-transmitted and blood-borne infections in Waterloo Region;
  • address the social determinants of health that create stigma, discrimination, and vulnerability for our service users; and
  • provide excellent HIV care and support to individuals, families and most-affected communities.

For more information about ACCKWA, please visit acckwa.ca.

Anyone wanting to learn more about CTS and harm reduction can contact ACCKWA at cambridgects@acckwa.com . Questions will be compiled and answers to common questions will be posted on the CTS FAQ page of the ACCKWA website: https://www.acckwa.com/faq-cambridgects/

Opportunities for the Cambridge community to provide engagement and feedback will be posted and shared within the next week on the CTS FAQ page of the ACCKWA website: https://www.acckwa.com/faq-cambridgects/.