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The diminishing youth treatment caseload in England is increasingly dominated by under-18s primarily being treated for cannabis use problems as the numbers of primary problem drinkers falls away to just 15% of the caseload.
HOT TOPIC 2017 HTM file
Focus on the families
‘Hot topics’ offer background and analysis on important issues which sometimes generate heated debate. Both as a treatment resource for the patient and a group needing support in their own right, a UK report described families affected by substance use as the “forgotten” carers. Here we turn the focus on the “unheard and unseen victims when a loved one uses drugs or alcohol”.
DOCUMENT 2017 HTM file
Commissioning impact on drug treatment: The extent to which commissioning structures, the financial environment and wider changes to health and social welfare impact on drug misuse treatment and recovery
Based on research, financial data and stakeholder surveys and testimonies, the UK government’s official drug policy advisers warn that without significant efforts to protect investment and quality, in England “loss of funding will result in the dismantling of a drug misuse treatment system that has brought huge improvement to the lives of people with drug and alcohol problems”.
HOT TOPIC 2017 HTM file
Promoting recovery through employment
One of our hot topics offering background and analysis on important issues which sometimes generate heated debate. Employment is seen as the key to lasting recovery, but how realistic is it for people whose lifestyles have revolved around using and obtaining drugs?
Part review, part ‘call to action’, the featured paper highlights the lack of awareness of evidence-based interventions for transgender people, and advocates for ‘culturally-sensitive’ approaches embedded in both general and specialised substance use programmes.
People with co-occurring mental health and substance use problems are often unable to access the care they need. This 2017 guide from Public Health England describes what better care would look like, underpinned by the principles that there is ‘no wrong door’ for accessing support, and it is ‘everyone’s job’ the other side of the door to help.
NICE guidance on health and social care for substance users with severe mental illness says that rather than creating specialist ‘dual diagnosis’ services, health and social care (including substance misuse) services should adapt to this caseload, and their care should be led by the mental health service.
The first review to evaluate shared decision-making and patient preferences for substance use treatment finds evidence that greater patient involvement in decisions can improve outcomes and has no negative impacts.
HOT TOPIC 2016 HTM file
Individualising treatment: an obviously ‘good thing’?
‘Hot topics’ offer background and analysis on important issues which sometimes generate heated debate. Individualisation might seem an obvious and basic prerequisite to substance use treatment, but in fact services have often striven for uniformity.
HOT TOPIC 2016 HTM file
The therapeutic potential of patients and clients
One of our hot topics offering background and analysis on important issues which sometimes generate heated debate. The recovery agenda emphasises the transformation of problem substance users into solutions to those problems through peer support and involvement in their own care – but perhaps at a deeper level, the patient or client has always been the author of their own recovery.
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