Device could aid heroin addiction recovery

Full Article

Daily Journal on January 31, 2017 by Annie Goeller

A device that sends electric impulses to the brain to block pain signals is a key part of a new program being piloted in Greenwood meant to help drug users kick their addiction.

The program isn’t the first to use Bridge, a device created by a company in Versailles in southern Indiana, but it is the first court program to use it, local officials said.

To start, the program will be offered to people on probation in Greenwood’s drug court. But the goal is to expand it to all county courts and eventually to people when they are arrested on drug-related charges, Johnson County Prosecutor Brad Cooper said.

If people successfully complete the program, their convictions could be erased from their record, Cooper said.

By doing that, the program would not only address the person’s addiction but also their criminal conviction, which could prevent them from getting jobs or other opportunities, Cooper said.

Greenwood is piloting the program, starting with a $7,000 grant and funding collected from probation fees that offenders pay. Officials aren’t yet sure how many offenders will use the program, or exactly when it will be expanded. They first want to see what issues come up that will need to be addressed, and then they will need to find a long-term funding option, they said.