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Your views sought on new inpatient alcohol detoxification services

Merton CCG holds the budget to provide Inpatient Substance Misuse Detoxification services for Merton. These services provide a safe place for patients to completely stop drinking alcohol while under close medical supervision. The service aims to help people get ready to start their journey to becoming and staying sober. These services are presently provided by East Sussex Partnership Foundation Trust in Crawley, Sussex. The contract for these services is due to end on 31 March 2016 and a new service needs to be put in place.

The London Borough of Merton is currently responsible for ensuring there are Structured Adult Substance Misuse Treatment Services available for local people. Structured adult substance misuse treatment services offer a range of help to people to help them stop misusing drugs and alcohol. 

In 2015 the London Borough of Merton fully consulted on all aspects of the alcohol detoxification services through an independent review. The review said that it would be much better if they commissioned the specialist inpatient provision alongside both preventative and Structured Treatment Services as a single integrated service. This would help patients move through these services more quickly and easily and would also help ensure the service offered the best possible value for money. Having more integrated prevention and treatment services was further highlighted following the Merton Mental Health Needs Assessment in 2014-15.

The local authority will therefore be responsible for leading the process for establishing the new detoxification services alongside the Structured Prevention and Treatment Service. The budget will stay with the CCG. The London Borough of Merton will be starting the process to identify and put in place the new services in September.

The new integrated service will have a local presence and will aim to locate the inpatient service closer to Merton than is currently the case. This will allow patients to access much needed support services following an inpatient admission more quickly and easily in the borough.  

Inpatient detoxification services are very specialist services and what they provide needs to be guided by experienced medical opinion. However we also want to ensure local people and service users have an opportunity to comment and give their views.  

If you have any specific comments or ideas in relation to the provision of new inpatient alcohol detoxification services please contact emma.gennard@mertonccg.nhs.uk by noon 16 September.