Belfast Telegraph

‘Waits are greater than we would wish’: what the Belfast Trust said

These tragic cases unfortunately highlight the terrible consequences of the availability and use of alcohol and other drugs on individuals, families, and communities across Northern Ireland.

Working in partnership with others, Belfast Trust continues to provide a range of support and treatment options for individuals misusing opioids.

In the first instance, anyone seeking help and support in relation to heroin or other drugs are encouraged to make contact with the Drug Outreach Team on 02895041433. This team supports individuals through harm reduction methods and to access treatment pathways.

The Community Addiction Team provides specialist assessment and intervention for individuals dependent on alcohol and/or drugs, including illegal and prescription medication.

The Substitute Prescribing Team aims to support individuals to reduce and stop illicit opioid and other drug use and reduce the harms associated with this.

The Belfast Trust has seen year on year significant growth in demand for Opioid Substitution Therapy and accepts that waiting times for assessment for Opioid Substitution Therapy are greater than we would wish.

This is due to a significant increase in demand for this service. Current mean waiting time as of April 30, 2019 is six weeks. The Belfast Trust continues to work to reduce waiting times for Opioid Substitution Therapy. Drug outreach and community addiction teams will continue to provide harm reduction services and advice, treatment and support to any individual while they are awaiting Opioid Substitution Therapy.

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