Heroin Taking Oxy's Place For More Addicts

Nicole Brochu | Sun Sentinel | February 19, 2013

The state's war on pill mills is making an impact, but there's a troubling byproduct: a surge in the number of people now hooked on heroin. With crackdowns focusing on siphoning off supply rather than treating addiction, people are finding that heroin, which yields a high similar to the widely abused oxycodone, is a readily accessible and less-expensive substitute.

"What's happening is that heroin has become vogue again," said Ben Brafman, founder and CEO of Destination Hope, a substance abuse treatment center in Fort Lauderdale. "It's so available. Any kid can get it off the street."

Based on projections from the first half of 2012, Broward County addiction treatment centers saw an 87 percent spike in admissions among addicts using heroin as their drug of choice — to 316 from 169 the year before, according to a study by known drug expert Jim Hall, using state Department of Children & Families statistics...