Virginia’s Heroin Epidemic Won’t End Without More Accessible Rehab

Virginia is one of several southern U.S states currently facing an enormously destructive heroin problem. Heroin addiction is a public health disaster that negatively affects people at all levels of society. One of the most troubling aspect of Virginia’s heroin epidemic is how the epidemic affects so many Virginians below the age of 18. It is sad enough that so many minors experience abuse or neglect at the hands of addicted parents. Compounding this tragedy, far too many young people suffer from addictions themselves. At this point in time, virtually all Virginia authorities speak of an opiate addiction crisis that has reached untenable proportions. The seriousness of this epidemic is evident in Richmond-area drug use statistics. Reportedly, this area saw a 50 percent spike in Heroin-related deaths from 2011 to 2013. In the years since, this epidemic has continued to afflict Virginia with a heavy burden. Of course, Virginia is just one of many states struggling to find a strategy for turning back the growing trend of heroin abuse.

Abuse of street drugs often co-occurs with prescription pill abuse. Statistics show that people who use and abuse prescription pills are far more likely to try heroin. Though it might not fit into traditional models of treatment, treating addicts with anti-addiction medication is a tactic that has shown results. Naltrexone and Suboxone are two of the most promising medications now used to help people quit using opiates.

Although the state of Virginia has taken some useful measures already, there is little doubt that the state must continue to improve its response to its opiate epidemic. Most health professionals in addiction treatment agree that states must ensure broader access to Suboxone doctors,  and related detox compounds. In addition, people need more accessible, more affordable detox and rehab. Until access to rehab becomes easier for low-income patients, Virginians will continue to suffer through an opiate addiction crisis that is poisoning the image of this historic state. Increasingly, Virginians are recognizing how the so-called “war on drugs” is leaving deep scars without producing appreciable improvementsin drug abuse rates. Instead of viewing people in need of detox as enemies or moral reprobates, Virginians are in the process of adopting a more respectful model that treats addicts as patients. This is firmly in line with the modern medical consensus that an addiction is a type of mental disease. Recognizing this truth, it is obviously imperative to treat addicts with the same respect commonly given to other types of medical patients.

Public Funds For Heroin Detox Facilities

Providing the public with greater access to in-patient rehabilitation is critical. In Virginia, the weight of tradition leads many to express doubts about using anti-addiction medications like Naltrexone. Nevertheless, the effectiveness of Suboxone and Naltrexone are well-established through clinical research.

The best American rehab centers combine drug de with individualized, holistic treatment programs that truly work. These programs have varying lengths depending on the needs of the patient. Rehab centers are even experimenting with specialized models like rehab for couples or single parents. Addiction recovery specialists now recognize how couples and families can provide addicts with crucial support as they work to overcome their drug habits. Although 12-step programs do work on their own, they can work best for addicts when combined with suboxone therapy. Some patients use suboxone as a supplement or replacement for detox. For those physically habituated to opiates, it is important to experience therapeutic detox in a trustworthy facility.


By and large, rehabilitation professionals understand that even good people can experience drug problems. For people with substance abuse problems complicating their lives, rehab can represent one of the best possible investments. Instead of judging people with addictions, society is increasingly treating these individuals as people with medical problems who deserve community support.