Written Answers. - Drug Treatment Services.

Tony Gregory

Question:

564 Mr. Gregory asked the Minister for Health and Children the number on the waiting list for each of the drug treatment centres in the Dublin area. [1595/99]

The following table gives the number on the waiting list for each of the drug treatment centres in the Dublin areas in December 1998.

Name of Treatment Centre

Nos. on Waiting List

Aisling Clinic, Ballyfermot

29

Baggot Street Clinic

36

City Clinic, Amiens Street

39

Domville House, Ballymun

115

Fortune House

42

Castle Street

30

Patrick Street Clinic, Dún Laoghaire

4

Trinity Court (Drug Treatment Centre)

131

Trinity Court (Eastern Health Board Services)

191

Total

617

The number of persons on the waiting list for treatment has fluctuated in the past number of months arising from the implementation of the Misuse of Drugs (Supervision of Prescription and Supply of Methadone) Regulations, 1998, which imposed strict controls over the prescribing and dispensing of methadone. As a consequence, a large number of patients who were being treated by general practitioners have had to be accommodated at treatment centres around the Dublin area. In addition, because of the increased availability of treatment locations, which now number 42, the demand for treatment has increased, causing an increase in the waiting list. This increasing demand undoubtedly arises from the greater availability of drug treatment services and in this connection, it is worth noting that the number of patients on the central methadone treatment list now stands at 3,600, which is the highest number ever on the list.