Home > HSE outlines plans for drug and alcohol services in 2008.

Pike, Brigid (2008) HSE outlines plans for drug and alcohol services in 2008. Drugnet Ireland, Issue 25, Spring 2008, pp. 9-10.

PDF (Drugnet Ireland, issue 25) - Published Version

 The HSE’s National Service Plan 2008 (NSP) outlines the agency’s plans in the drugs and alcohol area during 2008.1 The HSE’s Addiction Services, including both illicit drugs and alcohol, are delivered through Social Inclusion Services, which is part of the Primary, Community and Continuing Care (PCCC) directorate.  Table 1 summarises the deliverables identified for 2008 in respect of illicit drugs and alcohol, together with the outputs achieved in 2007.

 The performance targets for Addiction Services in 2008 have been set as follows:
o   Percentage of substance misusers for whom treatment commenced within one month is to exceed the 84% level achieved in 2007.
o   The average number of clients in methadone treatment per month is to reach 7,000, the same level as in 2007.
No target has been set for a third performance measure – the number of substance misusers under 18 years for whom treatment is commenced. The NSP explains, ‘Additional staff to support key service developments for under-18 services with addiction has been identified for 2008. The impact of these appointments on current levels of service provision will be monitored through our service plan reporting.’
The focus of the Population Health Directorate of the HSE in 2008 will include, among other things, further developing, in conjunction with the departments of Education and Health, the delivery of the Social Personal and Health Education (SPHE) programme; further research and education initiatives on alcohol in pregnancy; starting a health impact assessment project on alcohol off-sales; and continuing to work with the Department of Health on matters such as alcohol advertising and off-sales.  
The establishment of a unified health system is seen as an opportunity to establish new structures and mechanisms to promote the reduction of health inequalities. The HSE is extending social inclusion from its traditional focus on the care and support needs of vulnerable groups such as drug users, to enhancing the responsiveness of all services at all levels of care and thus improving access to health services for all service users. Initiatives include:
o   A new contractual framework for the GMS and other publicly-funded services involving GPs has been developed. One objective is to achieve greater responsiveness to the needs of vulnerable patients such as the homeless or those with addiction problems. In 2008 this new framework will be signed off on by HSE management, and engagement with key stakeholders will commence.
o   A review was completed in 2007 of the current arrangements for the management of health and personal social services provided by the non-statutory sector, in recognition of the need to develop standardised processes that safeguard service users, ensure transparency and fairness in the awarding of funding, link payments to service levels and outcomes, and use formal service level agreements. A new management framework was adopted and during 2008 this new approach will be implemented in the HSE.  
1.  Health Service Executive (2007) National Service Plan 2008.Available at www.hse.ie  

Table 1   Addiction Services in 2008 (after HSE NSP 2008: 51–52) - please see PDF

Item Type
Publication Type
Irish-related, Open Access, Article
Drug Type
All substances
Issue Title
Issue 25, Spring 2008
Page Range
pp. 9-10
Health Research Board
Issue 25, Spring 2008
Accession Number
HRB (Available)

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