The government has made 162 million pounds cut to the UK’s drug and alcohol service, resulting in drug and alcohol poisoning related deaths spiralling out of control.
The 18% cut to community-based treatment services has been made to England and Wales drug and alcohol treatment budget since 2013/2014. The stats show the devastating results of the government cuts; with each year since the cuts, the death toll figures rising.
Many of the deaths recorded are attributed to opioids. Most of us have read or heard about America’s opioid crisis, but what about the UK?
Statistics are set to increase as the trend continues; currently, there is little in the way of adequate alcohol and drug misuse/addiction treatment available on the NHS to combat this.
How The Government Cuts Affect Your Drug and Alcohol Treatment
If you are suffering from an alcohol or drug problem and require treatment in the UK; if you seek help from your local NHS community drug and alcohol team, your treatment will be affected by the following factors that have resulted directly from the huge government cuts to this part of the UK’s health sector:
- Longer waiting lists
- Lack of skilled and experienced staff
- Lack of continuity of care and communication between referral agents
- You are very unlikely to be funded for an inpatient or daycare alcohol rehab or drug rehab treatment programme
- Cancelled appointments due to sick leave
- You will only be able to access low-intensity treatment
In addition, your treatment plan is likely to lack in several key areas that are required to help you to recover from an alcohol or drug abuse/addiction problem, including: specific addiction treatments, bespoke community or inpatient detoxes, doctor consultations, referrals for additional support from outside agencies, intensity of treatment, continuity of care, counselling and one to one therapy.
The Inside Perspective
Sam, an addiction worker, who has previously worked for a local drug and alcohol community team, and is also in recovery, said:
“I am in recovery from alcohol and drugs myself; I know what it takes to help others to recover from this deadly disease.
“I found my time working for my local drug and alcohol team hugely frustrating.
“My caseload was immense, other workers were sick through stress and took leave on a daily basis, the waiting room was always full of frustrated individuals who were waiting sometimes all day for an appointment or a script; keyworking appointments were always rushed as everything came down to administration, targets and time management.
“My personal opinion of the treatments we were permitted to deliver is that they are hugely inadequate for those that actually want to and need to achieve abstinence.
“Many of the workers had no previous experience of addiction and so clients found it hard to relate to them and to be open and honest.
“In the end, the stress and frustration led me to leave. There was no support available for the workers either, yet on a daily basis, we were dealing with confrontation, desperation and tragedy. The whole situation felt hopeless”
Help For Alcoholics and Addicts
Being addicted to alcohol or a drug is very different from drinking a little too much or recreational drug use. Addiction is a chronic relapsing brain disease; characterised by multiple attempts to stop and failing. The brain essentially takes over the affected individuals thinking, driving them to do almost anything in order to get their next drink or high.
Alcoholics and addicts require intensive addiction treatment, this is not something that the NHS is currently able to provide. The result? A huge increase in deaths amongst the UK’s most vulnerable.
If you or a loved one require rehab for an alcohol or drug addiction, PCP offers affordable rehab and detox. We have kept our prices low so that more individuals can access life-saving treatment. Please call us for more information and immediate rehab help today.
You can also access additional free alcohol and drug help through contacting Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous
References and Sources