Record numbers of drug addicts in England are recovering from addiction

News item posted: 04 April 2014

Turning Point responds to the publication of new figures from the National Treatment Agency for Substance Misuse released today which show that record numbers of drug addicts in England are recovering from addiction.

Turning Point welcomes the figures which show that nearly 30,000 successfully completed their treatment in 2011-12, up from 27, 969 the previous year and almost three times the level they were seven years ago (11, 208). The data also reveals that nearly one third of users in the last seven years successfully completed their treatment and did not return, which compares favourably to international recovery rates.

Jackie Kennedy, Turning Point's Director of Substance Misuse Services, says, "There is a lot to celebrate here. The figures show that Turning Point, alongside other organisations, is moving in the right direction and turning lives around for each of the individuals who make up these numbers.

However, as the NTA has pointed out, there are risks and challenges ahead. We need to ensure that the investment and funding is in place so that we can continue to build on these positive results. April 2013 sees the responsibility for commissioning drug treatments move to local authorities and there are good opportunities here to link drug treatment with employment and housing support. The concern is that squeezed local authorities could disinvest to the detriment of the whole community.

We need to remember that the knock on effect of drug addiction can have devastating effects on a community and that increased recovery rates can have positive effects far beyond the individual supported. For example, Oxford Economics estimates that Turning Point's integrated drug treatment model prevents criminal activity that saves £23.9 million each year in Somerset alone. We need to continue to work together with local services and other organisations to ensure that more individuals, their families and networks are supported in 2012-2013."