Intended for healthcare professionals


Think tank criticises payment by results for treating drug addicts as “seriously misguided”

BMJ 2011; 342 doi: (Published 22 June 2011) Cite this as: BMJ 2011;342:d3935
  1. Helen Mooney
  1. 1London

Residential rehabilitation units in the UK are in “near terminal crisis” and the cost of not helping drug and alcohol addicts conquer their addiction is costing the UK £3.6bn (€4bn; $5.8bn) a year in benefit payments and methadone prescriptions, says a damning report.

The report, published by right wing think tank the Centre for Policy Studies, found that the cost to the state of maintaining addicts on methadone has doubled since 2002-3 to £730m a year. It calls on the government to fund more rehabilitation units to help drug addicts stop using drugs altogether.

The report says that the government’s current drug treatment policy is “flawed” and highlights the Drug Recovery Payment by Results programme, which it says will only serve to “reinforce” the “status quo.”

It criticises …

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