MINEOLA, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Nassau County is partnering with its medical center to make a new drug aimed at fighting the heroin epidemic available to addicts.

Dr. Jacob Sperber said the medication Vivitrol helps free heroin addicts of their cravings.

“It’s really a psychological tool, because your mind says to you, ‘Why am I doing this? I’m not going to get high,'” Sperber told WCBS 880 Long Island Bureau Chief Mike Xirinachs. “And so that really decreases the intensity of impulsivity.”

The once-a-month injection, being administered as part of a program called “A Shot At Life,” has a very high success rate. Vivitrol user Garrett Cassler said it is saving his life.

“It was just such a long road to get to where I was today that, without Vivitrol, I would be at rock bottom once again,” he said.

“It’s a wonderful thing, being able to think clearly and allow myself to become the man that I want to become.”

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