Officials say more babies exposed to heroin

Heroin epidemic in the Miami Valley (WDTN Photo)
Heroin epidemic in the Miami Valley (WDTN Photo)

FAIRBORN, Ohio (WDTN) – A new community effort to prevent babies from being exposed to heroin kicked off Monday at Wright State University.

“It’s everywhere. It’s at your neighbor’s house. It’s– you can walk down the street and get it. You don’t need to know a dope boy or anything like that. You can just walk down the street and get it. It’s bad,” said mom of 2, Jamie Holland, who is currently in recovery.

Holland says she was unknowingly  7 months pregnant when she sought help.

The new mom says her 2-week old son Blake was saved because of her treatment, but Holland says not every mom has those options.

Last year, Miami Valley Hospital had at least 75 heroin-addicted babies, this year they expect as many as 100.

Congressman Mike Turner says intervention is needed to decrease and eliminate those statistics.

“This is shocking. I think most people in our community have heard that heroin has become a problem in our community, but I don’t think they’re hearing the effects on the smallest ones in our community,” said the representative.

Rep.Turner (R- 10th District) says resources have to be expanded for more medical treatment.

Officials say most users don’t know how dangerous the drug can be; Holland agrees.

She said what started out as an experiment quickly became an unshakeable addiction.

When she was pregnant, Holland says she wanted to change, but didn’t know where to go.

“A lot of people run away from children’s services and stuff like that, but they’re actually there to help they weren’t there to take anything from me or to punish me. They were just there to help,” said the mom.

Now even with the help she’s gotten, Holland’s still nervous about the future.

“I think as long I stay strong and keep myself busy and don’t drift off back that way, I’ll be alright,” she said.

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