Up to £2 million per year will be spent on providing drug treatment to residents in Sandwell under a new scheme.
The borough’s current adult treatment service is run by a charity called Swanswell on a contract from Sandwell Primary Care Trust.
In April, a new service model will be introduced when Sandwell Council takes control of the PCT. It will be funded from a ring-fenced public health budget and will see an additional £500,000 spent annually on drug treatment in Sandwell.
Swanswell’s contract was due to end in August but is being extended until January 2014 to give council bosses time to put it out to tender.
Under new plans, the service has been commissioned to introduce a new procedure model to treat those who are addicted.
The new model will have three elements, which will include promoting and providing better access to the service, providing treatment and helping addicts recover from addiction.
A report to the council’s health boss, Councillor Paul Moore, says the new model will offer a safe, effective and cost-effective range of drug treatment services.
The report states: “The anticipated financial cost of the service is being developed and is likely to cost a maximum of £2m per year.”
The report adds: “The transition and move into Sandwell Council provides renewed opportunity to redefine service boundaries across health, social care and all stakeholders to fully assimilate shared agendas around families, employment and recovery.”
The new model will include both community, clinical and non-clinical services and focus on helping people have a sustained recovery.
It is hoped that more people will access the service, there will be fewer drug-related deaths and blood born viruses, and there will be a reduction in crime, and addicts will have an improved mental and physical well being. Currently Swanswell is operated out of Metro Court in West Bromwich, but the new scheme will involve more outreach working, and discussions are being held to ascertain the best place to run the service from.
Councillor Moore said: “This new service will look at working more within the community, rather than being based in one place. ”
Councillor Moore was expected to approve the investment at a meeting this afternoon.