Opioid deaths rising in Reno County

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HUTCHINSON, Kan. (KAKE) -

"It's been a long road to this point, but not that long, you know," says a Reno County inmate.

He sits in the Reno community corrections... reflecting on how he got here.

"It's escalated fairly quickly with drug use, It only took a year using more hard drugs to get to where I'm at," says the inmate.

The opioid crisis has hit the small town of Hutchinson hard.

"It seems like almost every day we're responding to an overdose of some sort. As you see that call volume, you can tell that the problem is on a rise," says Chief Jeffrey Hooper.

It's a problem the community is actively seeking to improve, with their first detox center potentially coming soon.

"To bring a detox facility here would be huge. It would be extremely beneficial. It would be utilized very well, I think. It would be a great step for Hutch," says the inmate.

With no real option for somewhere else to go right now...inmates say the issue isn't whether they want to make better choices. They just don't have the resources to do so.

"There's so many people in here for drug problems... I will say in a sense it does help to get some time to be able think and recalibrate, but in long term I think it'd be more beneficial to get help from a treatment center, something like that."

It's a step that he believes would be good for all parties involved.

"It's going to move things along faster I think for people, too. So, it should free up the courts and even free up the jail a little bit because they'll be able to transfer people directly."

Chief Hooper says they're making big strides in the planning process.

"Where's it going to be, how are we going to man it and what's going to be the sustainable long term funding source," says Chief Hooper.

The goal is to open this detox center by 2020.

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