Drug addicts kick the habit

A TEAM helping drugs addicts kick the habit today announced a huge turnaround in the number of drop-outs.The number of patients sticking to their treatment for 12 weeks has gone up from 60per cent to 92pc in six months at the East Suffolk Community Drugs Team (CDT).

A TEAM helping drugs addicts kick the habit today announced a huge turnaround in the number of drop-outs.

The number of patients sticking to their treatment for 12 weeks has gone up from 60per cent to 92pc in six months at the East Suffolk Community Drugs Team (CDT).

The improvement means the substance misuse service is now one of the top performing community drugs teams in the country for the key national target.

The service, run by the Suffolk Mental Health Partnership, made a deliberate effort to change things around by extending the opening hours of the Berners Street clinic in Ipswich, including weekend openings, extending needle exchange to Sundays, reducing the wait between initial assessments and treatment, providing individual case management and redesigning prescription clinics.

CDT teamleader Simon Anness said: “Research shows that if people can stay in structured treatment for 12 weeks, they are more than likely to sustain it for six to nine months and beyond.

“If we can get them past 12 weeks, then the likelihood of success improves dramatically.”

Most Read

The CDT covers Leiston, Saxmundham, Eye, Stowmarket, Wickham Market and Hadleigh.

Simon Aalders is co-ordinator of the Suffolk Drug and Alcohol Action Team which commissions drug services in the county.

He said: “Drug use causes a great deal of harm to our communities, damaging families and robbing people of their opportunities in life.

“By tackling drug use we can reduce the harm that drugs can do to individuals, their families, and the wider community. These figures show that the community drugs team is making a real difference.”

N What do you think of drugs misuse services in Ipswich? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter