Heroin abuse at record-high in Twin Cities

Published 4:30 pm Monday, January 30, 2012

ST. PAUL, Minn. — A new report says abuse of heroin and other opiates reached record-high levels in the Twin Cities in 2011.

The Minnesota Department of Human Services released the report Monday. It finds that heroin accounted for 10 percent of Twin Cities addiction treatment admissions in the first half of 2011, up from 3.3 percent in 2000.

Other opiates, which include most prescription painkillers, accounted for 9.3 percent of treatment admissions in the first half of 2011, compared with 1.4 percent in 2000.

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The report also finds the use of synthetic substances for hallucinogenic effects also increased in 2011. Hennepin Regional Poison Center saw a big increase in 2011 in reported incidents involving “fake pot” sold as herbal incense, synthetic drugs sold as “research chemicals,” and chemical compounds sold as “bath salts.”