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People in North Lanarkshire struggling with drug or alcohol issues will soon be able to access rehab and support services quicker and for longer.


Plans to provide fast access to treatment, support for more people to access treatment, services reacting immediately to help people, and increased use of residential rehab facilities will help people struggling with drugs and alcohol abuse and support their families.


Members of the North Lanarkshire Integration Joint Board heard of North Lanarkshire Alcohol and Drug Partnership’s (NLADP) far-reaching plans to tackle addiction issues in the area.


Working with the Scottish Government’s National Mission Priorities, NLADP aims to:


  • Provide fast and appropriate access to treatment and support;
  • Improve frontline drugs services;
  • Ensure services react immediately for people who need support and maintain it as long as it is required;
  • Increase capacity and use of residential rehab;
  • implement a more joined-up approach between services to address underlying issues.


NLADP will work using the national Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) standards. As a result, all people accessing services will have the option to start treatment on the same day they contact drug and alcohol services.


Those at high risk of drug-related harm will be proactively identified and supported to start or continue treatment for as long as they need. People will also receive evidence-based low intensity psychosocial support where required, be helped to grow social networks and receive mental health care if experiencing mental health difficulties.


In addition, everyone accessing the service will have access to independent advocacy and support for housing, welfare and income needs.


Dr Avril Osborne, North Lanarkshire Integration Joint Board chair, said: “North Lanarkshire Alcohol and Drug Partnership’s plans to help people struggling with alcohol and substance issues are welcome and very encouraging.


“There’s not only a very clear vision on how to ensure people with addiction issues benefit from effective support to achieve recovery, but also a firm focus on prevention and early intervention.


“All of us in health and social care are determined to help people with substance and alcohol issues recover, lead healthy lives, and rebuild and maintain strong relationships with their families, friends and communities.


“It’s also significant that children and families affected by alcohol and drug use will be safe, healthy and supported while loved ones are in recovery.”


Councillor Paul Kelly, North Lanarkshire Integration Joint Board depute chair, said: “It’s very positive to hear that NLADP will work towards identifying people who need support sooner and targeting resource to improve health and well-being.


“Improved access to residential rehab, for those who want it and it is clinically appropriate for them, has the potential to be a real boost for people determined to recover from alcohol or drug abuse.


“Importantly, the plans will place the experience of people with lived experience, and their families, at the centre of developments. Engaging with all stakeholders will significantly reshape how services are commissioned and create a robust response to the challenge of preventable drug and alcohol deaths in North Lanarkshire.”


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