A new resource by Public Health England (PHE) poses this question, to support local commissioners, providers and healthcare professionals to make the case for investing in drug and alcohol treatment and interventions.
Estimates show that the social and economic costs of alcohol related harm amount to £21.5bn, while harm from illicit drug use costs £10.7bn. These include costs associated with deaths, the NHS, crime and, in the case of alcohol, lost productivity.
Providing well funded drug and alcohol services is good value for money because it cuts crime, improves health, and can support individuals and families on the road to recovery.
PHE have produced a set of 32 slides, outlining the impact on families and communities, the costs, the benefits and challenges and approaches, all of which can be downloaded.
Guidance for commissioners, providers and clinicians on the roles of nurses in alcohol and drug treatment in England. | Public Health England
This resource describes the many potential roles of nurses in alcohol and drug treatment in England to help commissioners and providers of specialist adult alcohol and drug treatment services to recruit the right workforce to meet local needs.
The document outlines:
The roles of nurses working in alcohol and drug treatment including the contribution they can make to health and social care outcomes
The added value nurses can bring to alcohol and drug treatment
The competences and skills that should be expected of nurses working in alcohol and drug treatment
What is required to develop and maintain these competences
Annually updated alcohol, drugs and tobacco commissioning support pack for local authorities | Public Health England
This commissioning support pack will help local authorities to develop joint strategic needs assessment and local joint health and wellbeing strategies which effectively address public health issues relating to alcohol, drug and tobacco use.
The pack covers 4 topics, which are:
planning alcohol harm prevention, treatment and recovery in adults
planning drugs prevention, treatment and recovery in adults
planning comprehensive interventions for young people
planning comprehensive local tobacco control interventions
For each of these topics, there are:
a set of good practice principles and indicators to help local areas assess need and plan and commission effective services and interventions
bespoke data for each local area to help them commission effective services and interventions
Better care for people with co-occurring mental health and alcohol/drug use conditions: A guide for commissioners and service providers | Public Health England
This Public Health England (PHE) guide, developed with the support of NHS England, should be used by the commissioners and providers of mental health and alcohol and drug treatment services, to inform the commissioning and provision of effective care for people with co-occurring mental health and alcohol/drug use conditions. It also has relevance for all other services that have contact with people with co-occurring conditions, including people experiencing mental health crisis.
The guidance has been co-produced with members of the expert reference group for co-existing substance misuse with mental health issues, and in consultation with experts through experience, service providers, practitioners, commissioners and policy leads.
It aims to support local areas to commission timely and effective responses for people
with co-occurring conditions. It encourages commissioners and service providers to
work together to improve access to services which can reduce harm, improve health
and enhance recovery, enabling services to respond effectively and flexibly to
presenting needs and prevent exclusion.
There were 2,300 drug misuse deaths registered in England in 2015. This represents an increase of 8.5% on the year before and the highest figure on record.
This guidance outlines how providers and commissioners can prevent deaths from drug abuse. It sets out the scale of the problem, factors causing the rise in drug misuse deaths, preventing drug misuse deaths and a call for action for local authorities and the NHS.
PHE produces several tools to help Local Authorities and public health commissioning teams understand and inform their spending. Different tools are useful for different purposes and it’s important to know which one to use to get the most out of them.
For example, the SPOT (Spend and Outcome Tool) provides a broad overview of spend against a selection of relevant outcomes, allowing local authorities to make comparisons across some public health interventions.
Whilst is if often used by Health and Wellbeing boards and councillors, providing a high-level overview of spend and outcomes, it does not estimate value for money or return on investment.
The alcohol and drugs Value for Money tools bring together a range of tools to support local authorities, specifically alcohol and drugs commissioners, to explore ways in which the existing substance misuse budget can be spent to maximise cost-effectiveness.
Alcohol and Drugs Commissioning Tool
Developed by our Drugs and Tobacco team, this tool supports areas in understanding and improving cost-effectiveness. The Cost Calculator helps commissioners estimate local spend and unit costs, while the cost-effectiveness section helps answer a variety of questions on treatment interventions and the use of existing resources.
The Tool compares spend on the treatment system with outcomes of different types of treatments accessed by opiate users, non-opiate users and alcohol only (i.e. leaving treatment free of substance(s) of dependency).
This guide captures some of the progress made over the last decade in service user involvement, and confirms that it remains a priority, making suggestions for local service development and recommendations about how best practice may be identified, replicated and built upon. It describes 4 different levels of service user involvement, from co-developing one’s own care plan through to initiating and running recovery-focused enterprises. The guide showcases a number of examples of unique services from across the country that have been set-up by, or run by, former alcohol and drug users.