Holmesburg: Location is the Biggest Problem for The Healing Way Methadone Clinic

Since it opened last June, The Healing Way methadone clinic in Holmesburg has continued to receive some backlash from the residents living near by. The biggest problem surrounding the clinic is its location, located at 7900 Frankford Ave., just blocks away from residents and businesses.

The clinic, who refused to speak with the media, is said to see around 80 to 100 patients per day, according to local resident Patti Vaughn. Vaughn played a large part in trying to get the clinic shut down but her efforts were unsuccessful.

“I’m so passionate about this issue,” Vaughn said.


State Representative Kevin Boyle’s former chief of staff, Seth Kaplan, was in opposition of the location of the clinic.

“We [he and Kevin Boyle] were opposed to how the owners went about choosing the location and how they were operating their business,” said Kaplan. “We had a number of rallies and community forums, and held various fundraisers to raise money for the legal funds, like the cost of attorneys and appeals.”

Frankford Avenue is a bustling commercial corridor in Northeast Philadelphia.


“While we were looking to revitalize the avenue, that kind of business didn’t fall into line to what the revitalization should be,” Kaplan explained. “We felt that the location was the biggest issue and had no opposition to the business itself.”

Crime statistics show that in the last year, 86 police calls were made for the surrounding area, many of which were simple traffic violations. There was no evidence that the crime rate in the area increased because of the opening of the clinic and no reports of crimes committed by patients were found.


Vaughn and Kaplan both agree that it’s the location of the clinic that is the problem, not what the clinic provides.

“I think clinics like these are clearly needed for individuals who are battling addictions,” said Kaplan. “In fact, there need to be clinics and resources available but it’s really a matter of having the proper location. A library, a day care center and residents are within a close vicinity to the clinic. That’s where the problem lies.”

Eric Horvath, the director of communications for Councilman Bobby Henon, said that the councilman himself was strongly opposed to the clinic and even paid for an appeal.

“Bobby is in favor of treatment and recognizes the need for responsible clinics,” said Horvath. “But Bobby’s concerns echoed those in the community: location, and who was running it.”

Overall, Henon felt the same as the majority of the opposers. According to Horvath, Henon has been cautiously optimistic but is still asking neighbors to remain vigilant and monitor the area.

Images, video and text by Allie Kachapuridze.


  1. It could be coincidence, but I’ve noticed a lot more strung out, panhandling folks in the neighborhood over there past year. I see this near Walgreens, Shoprite , wawa and other random places. I’m starting to feel uncomfortable in my own neighborhood.

  2. I have lived in this neighborhood, a few blocks away from the clinic, for 20+ years. I was also against the location of the clinic, even though I am a client of the clinic. I, like others, thought it would bring an “undesirable” group of people to the neighborhood. However, the owners and staff of the clinic have done a fantastic job of monitoring and securing the area. Even though the clinic opened in August 2014, I, like many others in the neighborhood, was unaware that it was even open and operating until late September/early October, thanks to the clinic’s policies on loitering, noise, etc (which, by the way, are STRICTLY enforced). I take issue with several statements in this report. First, there is a security guard on duty AT ALL TIMES when the clinic is open. Secondly, parking spaces in Holmesburg have ALWAYS been at a premium. To blame the clinic staff for taking all the spaces is ridiculous. The staff is very small, only a handful of people at present. As for the clients taking spaces, on most days clients are in the clinic for approximately 10 minutes, maybe less. The clinic staff watches carefully that the clients do not park illegally, or block handicap access. However, like any other business, it is impossible to be 100% effective in this. But they do a very good job with it, again STRICTLY enforcing their policies. I wonder if this was a doctor’s or dentist’s office that opened, or any other type of business, for that matter, if these ridiculous statements about parking would have been made. Anyway, as a long time resident of this neighborhood, I commend The Healing Way on the wonderful job they are doing, balancing the needs of the neighborhood with the needs of those people who need help.

  3. Security guards are a joke I believe they’re there just to get paid read their Google reviews. And think this place open I’ve seen the security guard maybe two times in the first couple weeks and I haven’t seen in patrol the neighborhood since

  4. There has been an increase in crime in the neighborhood closer to lincoln high especially in the alleys behind houses where we park. there have been multiple reports to the police about theft from vehicles in my back alley alone. Keep the junkies away from our schools.

  5. The security guards do not I repeat they do not secure the neighborhood and I I had one of my cars totaled by customer of the clinic and this person hit my car that was parked on Frankford Avenue and they took off and left the scene to try and hide their car nearby to walk over to the clinic to get there dope. They were not worried about the accident they were more worried about getting there fix for the day they left the scene of the accident the accident happened on Frankford Avenue and their car was located on Leon and Decatur Street luckily someone saw them hit my car take all and the person followed them and saw them park the car and get out and ran to the clinic. Once I went in the clinic to approach the people who hit and left my car at the clinic was trying to remove me from the building to protect their customers and they did not care what just took place prior to them walking in the clinic . This place is a joke the security guards are a joke and they did nothing that they said they would do to sucker the neighborhood. There is a school and a daycare across the street from this place and this city is worried about people not selling cigarettes near a school and day care I think they need to worry about the people that go to this clinic and try to sell their Xanax right out front of the clinic door there is a school and a daycare across the street from this place and this city is worried about people not selling cigarettes near a school and day care I think they need to worry about the people that go to this clinic and try to sell their Xanax right out front of the clinic doors and up Decatur st. The healing Lake clinic does not care about the neighborhood they are in business to make money that is all. I have noticed the increase in frames around the area and I believe it is due to the lowlifes druggies that the clinic brings. I have four people just recently moved up my street to be closer to the clinic and I’ve see a very big increase in crimes and robberies

  6. Susan where is this security guard you speak of because I live right behind this place and I never see the security guards

  7. And I forgot to mention that they had no license no insurance no registration and illigeal tags on their car. These people don’t care about the rules and laws they’re worried about getting to this clinic anyway possible breaking the law or not

  8. The staff should be held to a higher standard but they only worry is to protect there dope feen customers when most of them are not even from the area they come here from up north philly and they bring all them north philly problems up here. I think that this clinic should be for residents of the north east only,North Philly residents have their own clinics on Kensington Avenue and they can do all the drug deals robberies and crime living lifestyles down that end of town.

  9. Wendy …. I attend this clinic. I am a fulltime honors college student persuing a degree in International Law. I have officially been going to this clinic for 1 year. I will probably be off of it in about 6 months to a year. Everyone that attends this clinic is from the Northeast and Bensalem areas.

    Also the panhandler crack heads you see at the 711 arent from the clinic. 95% of the ppl at my clinic work fulltime and are succesful SOBER AND CLEAN people. I actually dont know of anyone from my clinic that lives far from here… Why the hell would they come to a self pay only clinic when they have 3 insursnce accepting ones in their north philly neighborhood.

    Frank… As far as your car incident… Unfortunatley their will always be a few shitty ppl tht attend these places that are not serious about their recovery and getting their life back together. I can promise ya myself and almost every9ne at the clinic would have never done that… They would have waited amd handled the accident the correct way with you. He was wrong for thst but people like that are a VERY small minority at my clinic.

  10. Just about everyone that attends walks in, gets their medication, goes to their counseling session if it it their designated day for that, and they get in their car or hop on the bus and leave. I go 4 days a weeek as i get take home medication because i am sober and either hold a job or go to school. Ive gone from bein a jobless junkie for 5 years to now being a 22 year old student more sucfesful than some ppl i know who have never had an addiction. This clinic is an asset in our community. The security gaurd stays inside… He is FOR THE CLINIC . also also stats and factd show the ONLY change in crime stats wen a clinic pops up is the areas crime ONLY stays the same OR EVEN BECOMES LOWER! ZNobody at this clinic stays and hangs around this area i can guaruntee that. We do what we have to do at the clinic and head to work or school or back home to he a responsible parent to children. For ppl that had heroin addictions this medicstuon taken correctly does nothing mire than puts our brains at rhe same level of normalcy any other persons is at. Some ppl do try to get to high of a dose but there is something called dose capping where they only allow u to go so high without metabolism testing. The highest dose you can get before testing is no where near being on the drugs we were on prior to getting yes sober thru the clinic. Our toletances and leverls for the most part were sooo higy rhe correct small amt of methadone we take brings us normalcy. And we usually taper down and off of it within a couple years allowing our brains to slowly heal. Tge success rate for ppl who get clewn this way is AMAZING. The success rwte for opiate addicts thwt use 12 steps and rehab methods is non existant the majority of them will die. I will happily take this medicwtion for 2 to 3 years… Longer if needed to! In order to live a full life persue annd obtain multiple degrees and become a succesful professional. Bash the ppl refusing to grow up snorting and shooting dope that hsve kids or are 30 years old and need to grow the ef up! Not the ppl that have decoeed to grow up quot the bullsbit and have taken steps to better our lives.

  11. I was thinking about going here because it is a paid clinic and I figured it would be a little nicer than one that takes state funded insurance. I was hoping they would be more accommodating with work. Thanks for the review Melissa I am calling tomorrow.

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