Home > Substance misuse in the HSE South Eastern Area.

Fanagan, Sarah (2006) Substance misuse in the HSE South Eastern Area. Drugnet Ireland, Issue 19, Autumn 2006, pp. 12-13.

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The Health Service Executive (HSE) South Eastern Area published its annual report entitled Data co-ordination overview of drug misuse 2005 1 in June 2006.  The report comprises three sections: treatment services, education and prevention, and supply and control.


The section on treatment services analyses data collected from statutory and voluntary drug and alcohol treatment agencies, acute general hospitals and psychiatric hospitals in the HSE South Eastern Area based in HSE South. The data from the drug and alcohol treatment services are returned to the National Drug Treatment Reporting System.


The total number of contacts with treatment services in 2005 was 2,786.  This is an increase of 237 clients compared to the 2004 figure.  As the report notes, this may be a true increase or may be the result of improved reporting from the participating services.  Contacts with treatment services include those by clients continuing in treatment from the previous year, clients who were assessed but not treated, clients who were treated, and concerned persons.  Some 142 concerned persons, the majority (76%) of them female, contacted treatment services in the south-east in 2005.


The combined total of new referrals who were treated and clients who returned to treatment after an absence was 1,944. Of these:  

·       75 per cent were male and 25 per cent female;

·       7.5 per cent were under the age of 18 years, and 43 per cent were aged between 20 and 34 years;

·       Alcohol (66%) was the most common main problem substance for which treatment was sought, followed by cannabis (16.5%) and heroin (8%); 

·       The number of clients whose main problem substance was cocaine increased considerably, from 25 cases in 2004 to 85 cases in 2005;

·       Of the clients who had used a drug, 41 per cent reported that cannabis was the first drug they had ever used;

·       39 per cent of clients reported using a secondary substance, the main ones being cannabis (16%), alcohol (7%) and ecstasy (6%); 

·       63 per cent of clients treated for alcohol and 69 per cent treated for a drug as their main problem substance were treated for the first time.


Of all clients treated in the south-east in 2005 (including clients continuing in treatment from the previous year), 152 (6%) had injected a substance. Of those who had injected, 66 (43%) had shared injecting equipment at least once. 


1. Kidd M (2005) Data co-ordination overview of drug misuse 2005. Waterford: HSE South Eastern Area.


Item Type
Publication Type
Irish-related, Open Access, Article
Drug Type
All substances
Issue Title
Issue 19, Autumn 2006
July 2006
Page Range
pp. 12-13
Health Research Board
Issue 19, Autumn 2006
Accession Number
HRB (Available)

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