Pubdate: Tue, 17 Jan 2012
Source: Hull Daily Mail (UK)
Copyright: 2012 Northcliffe Newspapers Group Ltd
Bookmark: (Methadone)


MORE than 100 addicts have been weaned off heroin substitute 
methadone after a major review of Hull's drug treatment programme.

Instead of being prescribed methadone, about 2,000 heroin users are 
now being encouraged to become drug-free with therapy and voluntary work.

Figures for the first six months of the project show 108 former 
addicts are now drug-free and are no longer reliant on methadone.

Drugs workers are aiming to detox a further 200 users in the coming months.

Vicky Harris, Hull City Council's head of drug and offender health 
strategy, said: "We have made a good start.

"It means there are now people in the community who can stand up and 
say 'If I can do it, you can.'

"This is one of our key aims, because it will motivate other drug 
users to change.

"There is a sense in the drug-using community that people want to 
take the opportunity they are being given and that patients and the 
public have embraced the change.

"Our aims are quite ambitious, but that is part of our new approach."

In previous years, 164 and 97 people have been weaned off drugs and 
discharged from the service.

Work had already begun to pave the way for the city's push to detox 
people from heroin.

The Government compares Hull's progress statistically with cities 
such as Liverpool and Manchester and parts of London, such as Westminster.

Ms Harris said: "We are confident we can make a significant difference in Hull.

"We will ensure people are educated on recognising that people have a 
drug problem, so they can help them seek treatment as quickly as possible."

Staff across different services in Hull, including people who work at 
the city's job centres, are being trained on how to help drug users 
seek treatment.
- ---
MAP posted-by: Jay Bergstrom