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Film screening series creates community forum to address opiate crisis in Maine

October 30, 2018



Sean Flynn, Points North Institute

Valerie Compagna, Maine Behavioral Healthcare

Four free screenings of a Netflix documentary are intended to raise awareness and provide resources to help combat Maine’s most urgent public health crisis.

CAMDEN, Maine, October 30, 2018 – Points North Institute, with support from MaineHealth and its members, along with Maine Behavioral Healthcare, is launching the next phase of its Recovery in Maine initiative, a statewide series of free film screenings and community discussions about the ongoing opioid crisis in Maine and across the nation.  

The events to be held across Maine will include screenings of the Netflix documentary Recovery Boys, followed by panel discussions with clinicians, individuals in recovery, and interested community members. The film is an intimate look at four men in West Virginia attempting to reinvent their lives and mend broken relationships after years of drug misuse.  

The goal of these events is to raise awareness about the impacts of the opioid crisis in Maine, while identifying emerging solutions and available resources available throughout Maine. Community members from all backgrounds are invited to listen, learn, and participate in the conversation.  

The first series screenings will take place beginning November 29th through December 2nd with additional events in early 2019.  

“We are losing hundreds of Mainers every year – 418 alone in 2017 – to the epidemic of opioid use disorder and addiction,” says Steve Merz, CEO of Maine Behavioral Healthcare. “As Maine’s largest integrated health care delivery system, MaineHealth and its members are investing substantial resources in developing community-based solutions to address prevention, education and treatment of Opioid Use Disorder. Maine Behavioral Healthcare provides intensive treatment at three sites for patients who have acute levels of need. MaineHealth’s behavioral health integration program serves including  clinicians who are embedded in All MaineHealth primary care practices  provide treatment to patients who are more stable. Together, our practices served over 1000 Maine people last year. We are proud to support this film festival as a means to facilitate crtiical conversations in our communities about how best to work together and support one another to save lives.”  

“Documentary film screenings can be a powerful tool for building communities and creating a forum for public dialogue,” says Ben Fowlie, Executive Director of the Points North Institute. “We’re thrilled to work with MaineHealth to launch a series that directly confronts the opiate crisis, a critical issue that impact all Mainers.”  

The Points North Institute’s Recovery in Maine program kicked off in July with five events across midcoast Maine, followed by a strategic summit meeting with key stakeholders at the organization’s annual Camden International Film Festival. The Institute is planning additional screenings and discussions across the state throughout 2019.  


Thursday, November 29, Portland Museum of Art, 5:30pm Facebook Event    
Saturday, December 1, Smitty’s Cinema, Biddeford, 1:00pm Facebook Event
Sunday, December 2, Frontier Cinema, Brunswick, 3:00pm*   Facebook Event             
Sunday, December 2, Nasson Community Center, Springvale, 6:30pm* Facebook Event

*filmmaker Elaine Sheldon in attendance

About Points North Institute

Established in 2016, the Points North Institute is a launching pad for the next generation of nonfiction storytellers. Building on the success of the Camden International Film Festival, which is now entering its 14th season, the Points North Institute’s mission is to bring together a unique, interdisciplinary community of filmmakers, artists, journalists, industry leaders and local audiences, forming a creative hub on the coast of Maine where new stories and talent are discovered, collaborations are born, and the future of nonfiction media is shaped. Programs include the annual Camden International Film Festival and Points North Forum, as well as a year-round calendar of artist development initiatives that nurture the careers of diverse nonfiction storytellers and help them develop a stronger artistic voice.

About the MaineHealth hub-and-spoke IMAT program

The Integrated Medication-Assisted Treatment (IMAT) program is an effort that ensures patients get the care they need, from anywhere in the MaineHealth system. The program leverages the resources of Maine Behavioral Healthcare and other members of the system, and it is designed so that all patients get the best quality of care, at the level they need, and at a location as close to home as possible. Patients who need intensive services will get care by providers with special addiction training until they are more stable. More stable and healthy patients can get their IMAT treatment at primary care offices by doctors and behavioral health clinicians. If a patient’s condition worsens, they can switch back to intensive care for more help until they become more stable and ready to return to receiving care at a primary care office. Learn more here. About Maine Behavioral Healthcare Maine Behavioral Healthcare is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization serving more than 20,000 children, adolescents and adults at over 30 locations throughout southern, western, and mid-coast Maine, providing a continuum of coordinated mental healthcare from outpatient community offices to inpatient acute care at Spring Harbor Hospital. For more information, please visit  


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