Recovery Community Urges the Need for State Funding for Withdrawal Beds in Amarillo to Tackle Opioid Problem

Houston, March 1 – Today, Cenikor a leading provider for substance and alcohol addiction is urging the State of Texas to increase the assistance to the Amarillo community to address the rising opioid epidemic.

“Since the beginning of the pandemic, the State of Texas – Amarillo in particular – has seen an alarming increase in opioid use. Last year, Texas saw a 32.8% increase in opioid deaths and a 22% increase of people trying to seek treatment,” said Bill Bailey, President and CEO of Cenikor. “The State of Texas has been helpful but Amarillo needs more aid to get a better handle of the problem.”

The effect of Covid-19 has produced a limitation of funding opportunities for treatment facilities, which has led to 10% of treatment facilities throughout the nation (including in the Texas Panhandle) closing their doors, according to the National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers. This has limited overall access to treatment. Last year, Cenikor approached the State of Texas to request more access to treatment for the region. Cenikor was awarded limited funding for one withdrawal management (detox) bed, but with the funding limit, Cenikor has been forced to seek funding elsewhere to support its need to expand necessary services. To curb the growing problem, Cenikor has also approached State Representative Four Price, who authored several bills into law that benefits the addiction recovery communities, and they await a response to this request.

“Cenikor has been working closely with Texas Health and Human Services (HHS) and Representative Four Price to ensure that facilities like Cenikor will remain solvent and continue to serve. We are very appreciative of HHS and Representative Price for their current support and efforts to find additional funding for the community,” added Bill Bailey.

According to the latest congressional report, fentanyl has cost the nation nearly $1 trillion, and it has affected millions of US citizens, including recently, a Cenikor client, a mother with an addiction to fentanyl who is in danger of losing her young children. Knowing the stigma of being in an alternative mental health center or hospital where detox and treatment will not be given as quickly or efficiently, this mother appealed to Cenikor for treatment Because of her addiction and resulting unstable situation, she does not have insurance or means to privately pay. Although Cenikor did not have the additional state funding required to support her recovery journey, Cenikor made the decision to admit her anyway and give her the chance she needs to recover and return home to her family as a productive member of society. This brave mother is currently in Cenikor’s detox program and plans to stay at Cenikor’s Amarillo facility for extended residential treatment services. By utilizing the recovery and ongoing treatment services Cenikor offers for a continuum of care, she has the hope of making a lasting recovery and returning to her family very soon.

Due to the dramatic increase of individuals suffering from substance use disorder, like the Amarillo client who was at risk of losing her children, Cenikor was required by social need to expand its services to three withdrawal beds, even though it has State funding for only one withdrawal bed. Such philanthropic efforts cannot be sustained by Cenikor, and at the current rate, Cenikor will be forced to shut down its entire withdrawal program by the end of the current year unless the State of Texas mitigates this significant lack of funding. Every client currently in this Cenikor treatment program will lose progress made toward their recovery if Cenikor does not receive the requisite funding needed. “I urge the State of Texas to provide additional funding, or the State will see more facilities forced to end their treatment programs and/or completely close their doors thereby perpetuating, or intensifying, the alarming growth of the current substance abuse epidemic.” noted Mr. Bailey.

Cenikor is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that offers an array of successful rehabilitation programs, tailored to treat people who want to be free from substance use. Since its inception in 1967, Cenikor has been dedicated to helping those in
need. Cenikor continues to evolve to offer supportive services to veterans, adults, and adolescents in several cities across Texas, and neighboring states. More than 150,000 lives have been changed in the process.
For more information about this news release, please contact Michael Jenkins, Legislative Affairs and Media Relations Manager, via email at If you or someone you know is seeking treatment for substance use disorder, call Cenikor today at 1-888-236-4567.

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