Expert weighs in on recent heroin-related overdoses

KEZI spoke with Marc Douthit, the Program Director of the Buckley Detoxification Center of Willamette Family.

Posted: Sep 26, 2018 5:46 PM
Updated: Sep 26, 2018 5:52 PM

EUGENE, Ore. -- The program director at a Eugene addiction treatment center has spent 30 years seeing the local drug issue firsthand.

With Lane County health officials reporting 21 heroin-related overdoses over three days and police warning users about a bad batch of heroin, KEZI 9 News spoke with Marc Douthit with the Buckley Detoxification Center of Willamette Family to learn more. 

Douthit said he has noticed over the years that people are starting to use drugs, alcohol and other substances at a younger age.

Their facility, located off of Jefferson Street, is the largest treatment provider in Lane County, Douthit said. It can hold up to 22 people. Individuals that utilize their services must be at least 18 years old.

Douthit said the average age of people they treat are between 22 and 35 years old. He said their facility provides withdraw management for people seeking a way out of their addiction.

"We will keep them here for three to four days, sometimes up to five or six,” Douthit said. “We'll do an appropriate referral, we'll get them into residential treatment if it's possible right at that time, or the very least we'll get them into interim care. And in the meantime, we will address their emerging medical conditions that are going on, and we'll manage their withdrawal symptoms while they're here."

Douthit said the best way to potentially reduce these overdoses from happening is offering more treatment options in the community and also emphasizing prevention efforts -- particularly educating children and teens in schools on the dangers of drug use.

He said they are open 24 hours a day, every day of the year, to help anyone seeking recovery. All people have to do is to call 541-343-6512. to arrange an appointment. 

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