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Home > Dail Eireann debate. Written answer 1208 - Misuse of drugs [38980/17].

[Oireachtas] Dail Eireann debate. Written answer 1208 - Misuse of drugs [38980/17]. (11 Sep 2017)

1208. Deputy Róisín Shortall asked the Minister for Health if he will report on the information available to him regarding the growth in the use of cocaine and crack cocaine throughout the country; the steps which are being taken to address this problem; and the treatment available to persons using this drug. [38980/17]


Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Catherine Byrne): My Department and the Health Service Executive have a range of mechanisms for sharing information about the drugs situation with An Garda Síochána, including the Early Warning Emerging Trends Committee (EWET) and the HSE Public Alert System for adverse events due to drugs.


The EWET provides a forum for representatives from my Department, An Garda Síochána, the Health Service Executive and other relevant experts to exchange information on emerging trends and patterns in drug use.


I understand that anecdotal reports of an increase in the use of crack cocaine and apparent paraphernalia being found have been raised by service providers attending the EWET. The authorities remain vigilant for the possibility of an increase in the use of crack cocaine in Ireland.


The most recent Drugs Prevalence Survey for 2014/2015 indicates that there has been no increase in last month or last year use of cocaine, including crack cocaine, since the previous survey for 2010/2011.


The Health Service Executive has reoriented the addiction services in recent years so that they are capable of dealing with all substances. The HSE is continuing to develop the spread and range of addiction services to achieve better coverage across the country, especially in areas most affected by the drug problem. Treatment is provided through a network of statutory and non-statutory agencies, using a four tier model of service delivery. The four tier model is based on the principle that drug treatment is best provided at the lowest level of complexity, matching the patient’s needs and as close to the patient’s home as possible.

Item Type
Dail Debates
Publication Type
Drug Type
11 September 2017
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