LGBTQ+ Specific Outpatient Services Now Available In Rochester

June 26, 2019 05:54 PM

(ABC 6 News) - Statistically speaking, the percentage of LGBTQ+ persons abusing substances is higher than the general population. Because of this, one Minnesota based organization has expanded it's services into southeastern Minnesota with the hopes of helping those in need.

"An addict is self-medicating so they're taking their trauma from their past life, maybe issues with their sexuality, and trying to deal with pain through substance abuse," says Director of Business Development for Pride Institute Luke Miller. Miller went on to say that in addition to substance abuse and chemical dependency being between 25-35% within the LGBTQ+ community, there are also higher rates for tobacco use as well as higher rates of trauma.

Which is why Pride Institute opened its second outpatient clinic in northern Rochester, located off of 18th Avenue Northwest in Cedarwood Plaza. While they initially planned to open the clinic in 2018, due to internal changes they postponed the opening until May of 2019. Miller says that Pride Institutes newest CEO, Terri Hayden who previously served as the executive director of Hazelden Betty Ford in Saint Paul, made opening a clinic in Rochester. 

"There's just not a ton of options for people in the LGBTQ community down there... I mean, the closest thing for them to receive specific programming for substance abuse is in the Twin Cities metro area which, obviously, is an hour and a half away," says Luke Miller, Director of Business Development for Pride Institute, "So we saw the need and really felt like we could make something happen." 

And like their two other locations, with the other outpatient clinic in Uptown Minneapolis and the Pride Institute Campus in Eden Prairie, the outpatient clinic in Rochester is specific to those who identify as LGBTQ+.

"A lot of places will do an LGBTQ specific track and we don't believe in a one size fits all model," explained Miller. "We will take you, the individual, and we will bring you into an open group that will then accept you for who you are."

But long before they opened their doors in Rochester, Pride Institute was already helping the LGBTQ+ community. Having started in the mid-1980s, Miller says that Pride Institute has kept their same location for the last thirty-three years, "Initially, Pride was started to be a place where people with HIV and AIDS would come to receive care and find support."

If you are a member of the LGBTQ+ community or know someone who is and needs the help offered by Pride Institute, you can call 1 (800) 547-7433. Luke Miller, Director of Business Development for Pride Institute says that they accept insurance from the following companies: Blue Cross Blue Shield, Preferred One, Health Partners, Aetna, UBH, TRICARE, Cigna, Medica and UCARE. 


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