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article imageRead why alcoholics in Ottawa are given wine every hour

By Tim Sandle     Jul 16, 2016 in Health
This may seem bizarre but alcoholics in Ottawa are given wine every hour as part of their treatment. The reason, once explained, makes sense.
The prevailing treatment for someone with chronic alcoholism is abstinence, triggered first by 'cold turkey.' However, a a different course of action is being considered in one part of Canada. At a place called The
(a former hotel west of the city of Ottawa), which serves as a permanent home for former homeless people, the residents, including those with a drink problem are allowed a measure of wine at hourly intervals.
This may seem odd at first bit it forms part of a carefully considered Managed Alcohol Program. The long-term aim is to alter the drinking behavior of inveterate addicts.
According to a report by Linda Pressly, for the BBC, at half past the hour a ritual referred to as "the pour" kicks off. Here, as people wait with glasses, mugs or other receptacles suitable for drinking from, a measure of Californian white (13 percent alcohol, by volume) is poured out.
Each day the pour begins at 7.30 a.m. with a measure of 7 ounces (or 200 milliliters.) Then, very hour until 9.30 p.m. 5 ounces (or 140 milliliters) is given out. The center pours out to around fifty residents at each time slot.
The program - Ottawa's Managed Alcohol Program - was set-up to address the needs of homeless people who had tried to stop drinking and failed. The program was devised by the Shepherds of Good Hope, and Ottawa Inner City Health back in 2001. The aim is to appreciate that many alcoholics simply cannot quit, and the reasoning is that it's better to have them in a caring environment than roaming the streets; moreover, if their alcohol consumption can be controlled, they present less of a danger to society. The program is also said to reduce the burden on health services.
Hearing of the program via social media, Twitter user Kathy (@morgankathy), from Ottawa, tweeted: "Great work done by Ottawa Inner City Health for Inuit in Ottawa. Programs like the Oaks are true success stories."
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