Baltimore officials are expected to approve a 15-year lease at the old Hebrew Orphan Asylum in West Baltimore, where they plan to open a center to help people addicted to heroin and other drugs so they're not taking up emergency room beds.
The stabilization or sobering center at 2700 Rayner Ave. in Mosher would serve around 30 patients at a time, helping them sober up safely and then connecting them with long-term drug treatment and other social services.
The city Board of Estimates, controlled by Mayor Catherine Pugh, is scheduled to vote on the lease agreement Wednesday morning.
Dr. Leana Wen, Baltimore's health commissioner, said the goal is to lighten the load hospitals face from the city's ongoing drug abuse and overdose death crisis. And, she said, to be "treating individuals that have a substance use disorder with the same urgency and compassion as we would any other disease."
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