Healing Place needs more beds to deal with heroin problem - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Healing Place needs more beds to deal with heroin problem

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Louisville, KY (WDRB) -- There is more need for drug addiction help than available beds. At the men's detox at the Healing Place, there are 24 beds. Friday afternoon just half of them were used, but it's expected to be full Friday night.

60 to 70 percent of the beds here are heroin and opiate users. Men are sleeping off and trying to get through non-medical detox, which means no medication to get through the symptoms and it can be rough.

The Healing Place wants men to stay there five to seven days, women seven to ten. It can sometimes take eight to 10 visits there to finally break the habit.

Jake, who doesn't want his last name used, is a Healing Place client. He says, "You spend some time with them and let them know what the program is about and let them know they can recover." He helps men going through detox.

The 21-year-old knows detox all to well and has been at the Healing Place for the past six months. In about a week, he'll move out.

He became addicted to pain pills at 15 years old and progressed to heroin. He says five days before graduation to become a welder, he got kicked out of school and knew he had a drug problem.

Jake says, "80 percent of inmates are alcoholics and addicts in jail. I think if we would build more places like the Healing Place. I think they have 10 of them in the state of Kentucky, then they could really combat the problem."

There is often a waiting list of one to two weeks just to get in. Jay Davidson, the Healing Place Chairman, says, "There is more demand for our beds than we have beds. We can duplicate the Healing Place once over and still not meet more than 25-30 percent of the city's demand."

Davidson says the Healing Place works with 75 percent of men and women staying sober one year after completing the program. Residents hold each other accountable and police themselves. There are no drug searches.

Jake says, "I have to continue to do what I have to do everyday for one day to stay sober that day."

In the evenings, employees will use a Healing Place vehicle to pick up people who are under the influence at places like emergency rooms, shelters and on the street.

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