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Agencies unite for drugs fix

AN award winning drugs team at The Bridge in Chelmsley Wood have forged an alliance with drugs charities and a government initiative to launch a new addictions service next week.

AN award winning drugs team at The Bridge in Chelmsley Wood have forged an alliance with drugs charities and a government initiative to launch a new addictions service next week.

Solihull Integrated Addictions Service (SIAS), which will offer easy access to support and treatment to those with drug misuse problems, will be launched at The Studio, Solihull Library, on Friday, May 15.

SIAS is made up of four services: The Bridge, a specialist substitute prescribing health care service in Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust; registered charity Welcome; Str8 Up for under 18s, and a government-funded crime initiative, the Drug Intervention Programme.

All four have worked closely since 2008, but by formally joining forces they are now able to offer a co-ordinated care pathway, providing better continuity to aid those with drug problems in Solihull.

Dr Sanju George, consultant addiction psychiatrist at The Bridge - which won the Complex Needs category at the Guardian’s Public Service Awards last year - and clinical lead for SIAS, described the partnership as a “unique initiative.”

“I am very proud of this exciting new venture,” he said. “We have succeeded in integrating all our services so that our drug using clients receive a high quality of care and excellent treatment which has been demonstrated to work.”

SIAS will offer a single point of contact for those with drug misuse issues, which takes care of all their needs from prescribing substitutes for illicit opiates, detoxification and counselling, to help with employment and housing.

 

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