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Published June 19, 2012, 11:14 AM

DHS: Heroin treatment admissions rise sharply in Twin Cities

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — There's more evidence that heroin and prescription opiates abuse has a strong grip on the Twin Cities.

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — There's more evidence that heroin and prescription opiates abuse has a strong grip on the Twin Cities.

The Minnesota Department of Human Services released a report on drug abuse trends Tuesday. It shows one in five admissions to addiction treatment programs in 2011 was for heroin or other opiates. That's second only to treatment admissions for alcohol.

Heroin accounted for nearly 11 percent of admissions last year, compared to about 3 percent of admissions in 2000. Other opiates, mainly prescription pain killers, accounted for 9½ percent of treatment admissions in 2011, compared to about 1½ percent in 2000.

The report also says the use of synthetic chemical compounds is rising. The Hennepin Regional Poison Center saw the number of bath salt exposures grow from five in 2010 to 144 in 2011.

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