Are Wet Programs Really Effective?

Posted on 4/03/2011 by meg

Recently, Jay Leno has attracted more attention to the controversy that surrounds Ottawa's Inner City Health "wet" program by poking fun it for doling out wine to many of the city’s homeless alcoholics as a method of treatment.

Some of the participants in this Canadian treatment program are drinking up to 72 ounces or 3 bottles of wine each day depending on the severity of their addiction. Basically, chronic alcoholic residents of these programs are offered varying amounts of wine with alcohol content ranging from 0% - 12.5% every hour between 7:30 a.m. and 9:30 p.m.

Despite fairly positive research on the effectiveness of these programs, most people cannot fathom how feeding an alcoholic wine could possibly treat alcoholism. For instance, Cyril Morgan, director of the Welcome Hall Mission in Montreal, Quebec, is not convinced that this method of treatment actually works. "It doesn't wean them off, it pacifies them for the time they're in the program," he said. "Once you take them out of that environment, then what?"

Those in favour of the program boast about its ability to give some quality of life back to severe alcoholics. For many, it could mean the difference between life and death. In addition, research on such programs has shown that some individuals have quit drinking completely and many others have greatly improved their health and hygiene. It also means that hardcore alcoholics no longer have to resort to drinking harmful substances such as paint thinner, mouthwash or aftershave. Essentially, the program works toward stabilization in order to progress toward treatment of other aspects of their lives.
“According to Wendy Muckle, a nurse and director of Ottawa City Health, said the program — which also exists in Toronto and Hamilton, Ont. — is often misunderstood, conjuring up images of taxpayers paying for homeless people to get drunk.”
Muckle also states that research has proven that 1 out of every 55 people quit drinking each year because of this program. Although the success rate is not exactly extraordinary, it does mean that one more person is taken off the street and given their life back. Critics may not realize that these kinds of programs are directed toward individuals that may have spent the past 35 years drinking themselves into unconsciousness on the street.
“Montreal has between 3,000 and 5,000 homeless people, with each one costing taxpayers on average $55,000 a year in health, corrections and social services, according to a joint report from Simon Fraser University, the University of British Columbia and the University of Calgary.”
Meanwhile residents of this program in Ottawa pay about $80.00 each month for their booze and cigarettes and any small amount of monthly government assistance remaining is paid directly to the program to cover board and lodging expenses.

Regardless of the cost savings, the answer to the question as to whether or not wet programs are effective seems clear. These programs take the worst of the worst alcoholics off the street and alter their lives dramatically. “Daily police pickups, ambulance rides and emergency room visits are replaced with harm reduction and far better care.” Not to mention the fact that each and every person that successfully transitions into recovery makes this program effective. Personally, I cannot comprehend how anyone might find this program comical in any way.

Ottawa alcoholism program still controversial, despite signs of progress


No Response to "Are Wet Programs Really Effective?"

Leave A Reply


(+)-naloxone 6-acetylmorphine (6AM) Addiction Adenovirus Adolescence Adrenaline Aftershave Airplaning Alcohol Alcohol Poisoning Alcoholic Alcoholism Amphetamine Anaplasticity Anterior Cingulate Cortex Antibodies Anxiety Appetite Assault Attention Bath Salts Battery Acid Beer Belfast Benefits Benzoylmethylecgonine Bergen Facebook Addiction Scale Binge Drinking Biochemical Biological Clock Body Language Bone Fracture Bones Bonsai Grow Boot Camp Brain Brain Damage Break-Up British Columbia Bum Rushing Buprenorphine California Dreaming Canada Cancer Casino Cathinones Centers for Disease Control and Prevention China Choking Game Cigarette Circadian Rhythm Cirrhosis Citric Acid Cloud Nine Cocaine Cocaine Vaccine Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Common Cold Compulsivity Constitutional Right Content-Control Software Counselor Crack Craving Cues Death Decision-Making Demerol Dentist Dependence Dependency Depression Dilaudid Dopamine Dr. Drew Drain Cleaner Drug E-Cigarette Electric Shock Electronic Cigarette Emotion Employment Programs Engrams Exceptional Access Program (EAP) Facebook Facebook Addiction Failure Fainting Game Family Finances Flat Liner fMRI France Funky Chicken Gamblers Anonymous Gambling Genes Glutamate Government Grey Matter Hapten Harm Reduction Harvey Wallbanger Health Health Care Heart Attack Heart Disease Heroin Hillbilly Heroin HIV/AIDS Homelessness Hospitalization Human Rights Hunger Hurricane Charlie Hydrocodone Hydromorphone Hygiene Hypothalamus Illicit Drug Use Immune System Immune-Addiction Response Immunopharmacotherapy Implant Impulse Control Disorders Injection Injuries Instinct Internet Addiction Internet Gambling Intervention Ivory Wave Jay Leno Knockout Game Lantern Fuel Liver Long Term Depression Love Ludomania MADD Medial Prefrontal Cortex Medication Memories Memory Memory Traces Meperidine Mephedrone Mesolimbic Reward Pathway Methadone Methamphetamine Methylenedioxypyrovalerone (MDPV) Methylone Mid-Brain Money Montreal Morphine Motivation Mouthwash mRNA Muscle Control Naloxone Naltrexone Narcotic Negative Consequences Neural Pathway Nicotine Nicotine Gum Nicotine Patch Noradrenalin Norepinephrine Obsessive-Compulsive Online Gambling Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) Ontario Drug Benefit (ODB) Ontario Works (OW) Opiate Opioid Oral Hygiene Orbitofrontal Cortex Osteoporosis Ottawa Overdose Oxycodone Oxycontin Oxyneo Pain Pain Management Painkiller Paint Thinner Pass-out Game Pathological Computer Use Pathological Gambling Percocet Placebo Poker Pop Pre-frontal Cortex Prefrontal Cortex Prescription Drugs Propoxyphene Psychoactive Purple Dragon Rats Recovery Red Dove Rehab Rejection Relapse Relationships Research Research Validity Reward Reward and Punishment Risky Sexual Behavior RNA Safe Injection Site Salt Scarface Sensory Perception Serotonin Sex Addiction Shame Sleep/Wake Cycle Sleeper Hold Slot Machines Smoking Smoking-Cessation SNDRI Sobriety Social Assistance Social Media Social Security Soda Soda Addiction Sodium Sodium Ion Channel Space Monkey Speech Star Dust Striatum Subutex Successful Treatment Supreme Court of Canada Synapse Teenagers Tobacco Toll-Like receptor 4 (TLR4) Tooth Decay Tooth Enamel Tooth Erosion Treatment Trillium Drug Program Urine Sample Vaccine Vancouver Vanilla Sky Vaporize Vicodin Virus Vivitrol Welfare Wet Program White Lightning White Matter Wine Withdrawal

Health Blogs - Blog Rankings