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Sunday, 20 April 2014

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£200,000 alcohol and drug clinic bid

A NEW £200,000 alcohol and drug clinic could be on the cards for Workington.

A planning application has been lodged for a vacant building on Finkle Street to change its use to a rehabilitation clinic.

Greater Manchester West Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust, which has submitted the application, said it would help around 500 people a year, including users, their families and carers. It will employ 10 full-time staff.

Kate Hall, assistant director of the Alcohol and Drugs Directorate for the Greater Manchester trust said: “The Cumbria drug and alcohol action team identified a gap in service provision in its recent tendering exercise which this planning application aims to address.

“We will work closely with the community, current service users as well as people who have gone through treatment are in sustained recovery and make sure we listen to them – they are experts by experience and in the best place to show us how to deliver the best standards of care possible.”

The clinic will provide information and advice including group work and will be used by support groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous.

There will be a free needle exchange facility and access to services such as Blood Borne Virus screening, testing and vaccination.

The Greater Manchester trust won the tender to provide alcohol and drug prevention and rehabilitation services across Cumbria starting from July 1.It was previously the responsibility of three separate organisations – Cumbria Partnership NHS Trust, the Alcohol and Drug Service and Crime Reduction Initiatives.

The new clinic will replace the current drug and alcohol facility in Peter Street and staff will be transferred.

The plans have been welcomed by Dave Smith, founder of The Rising Sun Trust, a drug and alcohol charity based in Workington. He said: “It is something we really need and we will work with them.

“The sooner they are up here established and starting to work with the local agencies the better.

“We have been doing this for 13 years and the need for our place has got more rather than less and the more people that help the better.”

The proposed opening hours for the clinic would be 8.30am to 5pm Monday to Friday with the possibility of opening some evenings and weekends.

Five other locations in the town centre were identified and discounted by the trust as suitable locations prior to submitting the application.

The clinic would include three consulting rooms, a group room, reception and waiting area, needle exchange and an office.

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