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June 22, 2004

Dail Debates. Written Answers. National Drug Strategy : Dail Debates

Mr. Boyle asked the Minister for Health and Children the effect that the closure of the Bradan day programme, Navan, will have on the national drugs strategy.

Minister for Health and Children (Mr. Martin): The provision of drug treatment services is the statutory responsibility of the health boards. I am informed by the North Eastern Health Board that the day programme is not closing.

The overall objective of the Government’s strategy on drug misuse is to significantly reduce the harm caused to individuals and society through a concerted focus on supply reduction, prevention, treatment and research. It wants to provide a range of options to encourage and enable drug misusers to avail of treatment with the aim of reducing dependency and improving overall health and social well-being. This is being achieved by addiction treatment service providers, statutory and non-statutory, working together in partnership.

Recently I approved national lottery funding of €50,000 for the Bradan day programme. The NEHB has advised me that it provided funding to Bradan House. The health board gave the day programme €27,000 in 2002 and €35,000 in 2003.

Since the middle of last year negotiations took place between the board and the Bradan day programme about developing a service level agreement for referral of drug free clients from the board’s addiction service to the day and aftercare programmes. An agreement was reached. As soon as it is signed by Bradan, the health board will fund clients referred by it on a per client basis. This is based on the premise that the services offered by the programme will enhance those of the board’s and not replicate what was already being provided. These new arrangements are likely to result in a greater number of clients being referred to the Bradan day programme.

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