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NMC steps out of addiction treatment, Howard Center expands services

As we have shared in a letter and in telephone calls to our patients, NMC is transitioning out of providing outpatient addiction treatment services. As of July 31, 2020 this service will be provided in partnership with Howard Center, who are expanding services to provide patients with a local option for continuity of care. A smooth transition for patients is crucial and is our ongoing focus. We are thankful Howard Center is stepping forward in this regard as a long-time partner in our community.

The announcement from Howard Center and NMC explained, “Howard Center will provide individual and group therapy, care coordination, nursing and prescription of suboxone/subutex, and continue to partner with NMC to use their laboratory services. The new Spoke will offer a range of options to best meet client needs with telehealth and in-person service options and flexible scheduling. NMC and Howard Center will work together to ensure a smooth transition and Howard Center has established a dedicated line to answer questions and help to coordinate the transition. Anyone seeking substance use and recovery services can speak with a member of their team directly by calling (802) 488-6290.”  In addition to that, patients can also contact VT Helplink at (802) 565-LINK or visit VTHelplink.org for additional resources available to them.

This was a very difficult decision to reach. While the work of the Hope & Recovery team has been a source of pride for NMC, years of financial challenges have made it necessary to refocus on core services and being a small community hospital. We must return to a blend of services which can be financially sustainable within Vermont’s current healthcare system. This difficult change results in critical financial improvement as NMC returns to break even status.

NMC has a long history of caring for our community. While we regret having to transition out of this service line, we do so as part of a detailed plan to preserve our ability to provide core hospital services in this community for the long-term. We also do so with confidence in Howard Center and other providers who are better positioned to sustainably provide outpatient addiction treatment services.


— Jerry Barbini, NMC’s Interim Chief Executive Officer