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New enhanced service for drug and alcohol users launched

A new enhanced service for those receiving treatment for drug and alcohol dependency has been launched in partnership by Tower Hamlets Council and GP practices.

The aim of the service is to facilitate identification and co-ordinated treatment of drug and alcohol problems across GP practices in Tower Hamlets in partnership with the Reset Tower Hamlets Drug and Alcohol Service.  The service will ensure drug / alcohol users are supported to access mainstream healthcare, enabling support for wider physical and mental health needs as required.

Mayor John Biggs said: “It’s important to ensure those suffering from addictions have access to additional, integrated care as they may need support with more than overcoming their addictions.

“That’s why the council invests almost £8M every year to help those suffering make a successful recovery. The Reset service helped 350 people last year successfully complete treatment and get their lives back.”

The Reset service provides drug and alcohol treatment and recovery support services to Tower Hamlets residents aged 18 or over and support to family and friends who are concerned about someone’s drug and/or alcohol use.

Tower Hamlets GPs have long been involved in treating drug and alcohol users across the borough and the launch of this reshaped primary-care service will now include:

  • a ‘Specialist Substance Misuse Annual Health Check’ – an annual check to ensure that those that have signed up to Reset have access to more comprehensive checks including diabetes, blood pressure, respiratory and smear tests
  • Alcohol Identification and Brief Advice (IBA): screening for unidentified alcohol issues with advice and service referral information as necessary
  • prescription of relevant medicine in primary care to help those engaging with Reset recover from their drug addiction

Cllr Denise Jones, lead member for adults and health said: “The new service is an important step in facilitating care outside the specialist service in order to continue supporting those recovering from addictions.

“This joined up approach has a focus on health checks and improved health outcomes for drug and alcohol users which will ultimately help with their recovery.”

Training will be provided for all primary care staff across the borough to ensure high quality delivery of the service.