We have commissioned a major new report called Making Rehab Work
The work was carried out by Mike Pattinson and Kevin Crowley, two experts with many years’ experience in the drug and alcohol treatment sector.
We believe this is the most in-depth analysis of the status of residential treatment in England for many years. It certainly has the most wide-ranging endorsement we have seen on this topic with support from across the drug and alcohol treatment sector and people with lived experience.
Furthermore, the findings have been influenced by people who use a wide range of treatment services, those with lived experience of residential treatment, commissioners and providers of residential and community-based treatment.
Why did we commission this report? We’ve known for a while, and spoken about often, how access to treatment is at a record low in England and characterised by an extreme postcode lottery of access. So why this new report? Quite simply… because it’s complicated.
The causes for the decline in access to residential treatment are highly complex, encompassing multiple factors which have changed over time and to improve access to residential treatment in England will require commitment from all stakeholders including local government, commissioners, Office for Health Improvement and Disparities, providers and others.
And because it’s complex and accountability is wide spread, the issue is easily dismissed.
We wanted to show that despite the complexity we can define a clear set of recommendations to ensure fair access to residential treatment. If we work together, we can fix this.
And we must fix it. The people that will benefit from Making Rehab Work are people who face prejudice on a daily basis that hinders their progress in life. They are brothers and sisters, sons and daughters, mums and dads. Often the discrimination they face started when then they were very young and has lasted a lifetime.
The full range of evidence-based services should be available for people in need wherever they live. This report does not advocate for one treatment approach instead of another. We need appropriately funded community-based treatment and improved access to detox and residential treatment. We need the full range of harm reduction and a person-centred approach of non time-limted treatment and support.
If we do so, we can go some way to addressing the challenges society poses for some of the most highly stigmatised people in the country.