The Ravalli County Public Health Department is worried that many citizens may be suffering from withdrawals after their access to certain drugs was cut-off by an investigation into Big Creek Family Medicine and Urgent Care center in Florence.

"We are just concerned of the risk of withdrawal of patients that may not have access to further narcotics and benzodiazepines in the county and in the surrounding area," said Ravalli County Health Department Spokeswoman Dr. Carol Calderwood. "Right now, we're just sort of preempting in case there's a lack of ability to get prescriptions for a lot of people"

The health department has issued the following updates:

  • Patients are advised that narcotic withdrawal can be painful, but it is not fatal; however a pregnant woman who is undergoing narcotic withdrawal is also advised that she is at risk for losing the fetus.
  • Benzodiazepine withdrawal may rarely be life threatening for people with underlying seizure disorders.
  • Withdrawal may also bring out suicidal tendencies. For a mental health crisis you may call West House in Hamilton at 532-8990 or contact your local crisis center.
  • If you are running out of narcotic pills that you take every day, we recommend you start a taper now. Count the number of pills and decrease by 10 % every 1-7 days, depending on how many you have. Support is also available for questions about tapering at 532-8990.

Those in need of help in constructing a tapering plan are asked to call 532-8990.