While working on a story about Boise’s relationship with Alcoholics Anonymous, we learned Boise’s Detox Center is not what it was cracked up to be.
The facility may be well intended, save money for the hospitals, and provide services to some of those in need. It doesn’t fill the role it was touted as filling. Most recent numbers indicate about 75-80 admission per month.
A little history–
About seven years ago politicos in Boise, Meridian, Ada County, and the state of Idaho joined to support a “Detox Center” to take care of emergency cases that needed to be taken off the street, but had otherwise not committed a crime–the typical town drunk and overdosed drug user.
A place called Allumbaugh House, owned by the Boise/Ada Housing authority emerged. Doors opened in 2010 and we finally had a place other than jail for alcoholics and drug addicts.
Here is a recent breakdown of funding:
State of Idaho – $787,404
Ada County- $250,000
St. Al ‘s $200,888
United Way $117,756
For nearly $2,000,000 a year we got what just might be a “pressure relief valve” for the existing hospitals. The perceived drop off place for law enforcement seems to have disappeared and the Ada County Jail drunk tank is busy as ever.
Here are the rules for admission and denial at Allumbaugh House:
● 18 years of age and older.
● Reside within Region IV, with priority to those referred by a funding partner agent or a resident within a funding partner area.
● Diagnosed with a substance abuse/addictions disorder.
● Likely to have withdrawal upon cessation of use.
● Meets ASAM placement criteria not to exceed Level III.7
● BAC value no greater than .20
● Priority to low-income and/or indigent clients.
●Capacity to benefit from short-term stabilization.
● Voluntary admission and participation.
● Does not meet ASAM placement criteria for Level III.7
● Unwilling to enter treatment voluntarily.
● BAC exceeds .20
● Subject of involuntary commitment proceedings/detention.
● Actively harmful to self/others.
● Acute medical conditions requiring a higher level of care.
● Walk-in emergencies
In short, if someone is: really drunk (.2 or higher), doesn’t have an appointment, is not diagnosed with an abuse problem, or won’t volunteer for treatment they are either left on the street or taken to jail.
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