SERVICES for people who abuse drugs and alcohol are being brought together — thanks to a new three-year contract, which has been awarded to the Isle of Wight NHS Trust.
The new community service, which is to be launched on October 1, aims to help people in their recovery from substance misuse and focuses on recovery orientated treatment in line with changes to the National Drug Strategy.
The strategy promotes interventions which encourage users to leave treatment and re-engage fully with society.
The service will provide a single point of contact for the public and clinicians, which will enable easier referral to services.
The contract has been awarded by the Isle of Wight Council under its responsibility for public health and includes an option to extend it for a further two years.
It is estimated the new co-ordinated service will deliver significant savings compared to the combined cost of existing services.
Historically, drug and alcohol treatment provision on the Island has been made up of separate services, including counselling, detoxification, young people’s services and rehabilitation.
During a consultation, it was found the public were often confused as to which service should be accessed, depending on their own issues.
Cllr Phil Jordan, the Isle of Wight Council executive member for public protection, said: "We are very pleased to announce that this essential and highly important contract has been awarded.
"It heralds a far more co-ordinated and recovery focused approach in line with the latest national guidance and following a full appraisal and consultation earlier this year.
"The Isle of Wight NHS Trust is exceptionally well-placed to meet the need for such a fully co-ordinated and expertly provided service in line with both national and local requirements.
"Essentially, the aim of this new service will be for each individual seeking recovery from substance misuse to be able to access prompt, integrated support, treatment and aftercare — and to be helped to fully reintegrate into mainstream society."