WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Wilmington is no stranger to drug overdoses, according to a study by Castlight Health it is ranked number one for opioid abuse in the nation.
Since 2010, North Carolina has seen an increase of nearly 900% in opioid and heroine overdoses. And now, the Wilmington Treatment center is trying to bring down those numbers with a new medical detoxification building.
It is the first step to help combat the growing epidemic in the area. Mayor Bill Saffo and emergency responders, who see the effects first hand, were among dozens of people at the groundbreaking ceremony Wednesday afternoon.
CEO of Wilmington Treatment Center, Pam Stalls has been waiting for this day for a while now.
“It is incredibly important because detox is the beginning,” Stalls said. “Ya know, we have to be able to get our patients off of opioids and alcohol in a safe way in order for them to be even able to have a clear mind to make a choice to become clean and sober.”
With this new addition they will have room for 187 beds, 48 of them dedicated to helping addicts detox.
“My entire career has been dedicated to serving persons who suffer from the disease of addiction,” Stalls said, “so to be able to expand that service and to be able to do it in this beautiful building is just a dream come true.”
Stalls says they hope to have the new medical detoxification building up and running by the end of next year.