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Major investment in drug treatment services

Public Health Minister Dawn Primarolo today announced £398m funding for drug treatment for 2008/09 to build on the successes of existing drug treatment programmes.

Record levels of investment have delivered record numbers entering and staying in drug treatment services. 195,000 people received treatment in 2006/07, 130 per cent more than in 1998.

The Drug Treatment Budget is changing to a system of allocations per person treated, rather than by formula, thus ensuring that the investment goes where it is most needed. This change is occurring over four years to ensure that the resources secure the best return in regards to the delivery of effective treatment.

Dawn Primarolo said:

"Today's announcement demonstrates that tackling drug misuse is a key Government priority and we have achieved a great deal in tackling the harm that drugs cause to both individuals and society.

"We have reduced drug-related deaths and overall levels of drug-related crime. More people are entering drug treatment programmes than ever before, waiting less time and staying on treatment programmes for longer.

"For every £1 spent on treatment, at least £9.50 is saved in crime and health costs. This will help get drug users out of a painful cycle of drug addiction, a life away from drugs for the user and a new future for families, friends and communities whose lives have been impaired by the misery of drug addiction.

"The move towards allocating funding in a fairer way - per person treated - will ensure that this treatment is focussed where it is most needed."

Bristol will receive an increase in funding of 13 per cent, and is projected to receive significant increases in the following two years as well.

 [10 January 2008]

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