Skip to main content

Shawnee Tribe Purchases Opiate Clinic


The Absentee Shawnee Economic Development Authority, the Shawnee, Oklahoma-based business arm of the Absentee Shawnee Tribe, has purchased an outpatient substance abuse treatment clinic specializing in methamphetamine and opiate addictions.

The Oklahoma City-based treatment center was previously named Quapaw Counseling Services and owned by the Quapaw Tribe.

“The reason for the sale,” said Dan Cross, executive director of the now Absentee Shawnee Counseling Services, “is that the Absentee Shawnees have the jurisdiction here that the Quapaws did not. However, under Absentee Shawnee Counseling Services, we will continue to offer the same excellent treatment to all people, native and non-native, that we have for the past four years here.”

Oklahoma leads the nation in prescription painkiller abuse, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration (SAMHSA) announced in March 2008. Opioids include prescription painkillers, like Oxycontin, oxycodone, Lortab, hydrocodone, Percocet, Vicodin, Dilaudid, etc., and heroin, states the Absentee Shawnee Counseling Services' Facebook page. "We utilize the SAMHSA evidence-based best practice Medication Assisted Treatment to achieve optimal treatment outcomes for opioid addiction. We can often skip inpatient detox for those who are actively addicted to opioids," the description continues.

Four and a half years ago the Quapaws expanded their operations from their Quapaw Counsel Services in Miami, Oklahoma to this location. A sister clinic was later developed in Tulsa by the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokees: Keetoowah Cherokee Treatment Services. These three clinics are known statewide for their excellent treatment in these specialized areas of critical need.

The Tulsa clinic was chosen for a training video by the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics to demonstrate the manner in which to run an Opioid Treatment Program.

“We offer Medication Assisted Treatment at these clinics, a SAMHSA clinical best practice proven to get the best results for opiate addiction," stated Cross. National data shows that traditional treatment is effective 8-10 percent of the time while MAT is effective 70-75 percent of the time…. Often, we can skip impatient detox moving actively addicted people right into outpatient treatment.”

Treatment is low cost, with no out-of-pocket expense to people who are Medicaid or O-EPIC eligible. More information can be found at

“It is with great pride that the Absentee Shawnee offer one of the best three Opioid Treatment Programs in the state," said Governor George Blanchard of the Absentee Shawnee Tribe. "I think that it is fitting that here in Native America,” a reference to the Oklahoma tourism theme, “that Native Americans offer the top three programs in the state.”

Blanchard conducted a blessing of the program at the Grand Opening on October 12.