News Local/State

Pilot Program Set To Help Break Heroin Addiction


The Champaign County Drug Court will soon offer a new option for some trying to break their addiction to heroin.

The pilot program launches later this month and will eventually provide medication and therapy to up to 30 people who qualify and consent to the treatment. They would then receive monthly doses of a drug called Vivitrol. It reduces the effects of drugs like heroin and cuts down on people's cravings.

“We are in the midst of a major heroin epidemic in this community and must come together to address the problem that more people are addicted because heroin is cheaper and easier to get than even common pain killers like Vicodin and hydrocodone,” Champaign County Circuit Judge Jeffrey Ford said through a press releae. Ford heads the Champaign County Drug Court.

"With more pure, potent drugs, we’ve seen multiple overdoses and deaths, and we want to address this illness, keep people alive and not put people in jail who do not need to be incarcerated," he said. 

The program is a partnership between the drug court, Carle and the Prairie Center.