Life-saving NHS detox unit to open page thumbnail

A new residential unit for people requiring intensive support to reduce severe dependence on alcohol or drugs was opened by Dame Carol Black, author of the 2021 Government commissioned independent review of national drug policy, in Fareham, Hampshire, this month.

The nine-bed unit – named after Dame Carol - will serve patients in the South and South East England and will be managed by specialist harm reduction and recovery provider, Inclusion, part of the Midlands Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, and Two Saints. Two Saints offers housing and support to people who are homeless, vulnerable or at risk of becoming homeless and need support to get back on their feet.

The unit will accept referrals from 20 Local Authority areas across the South of England – with Hampshire County Council acting as lead commissioner for the service - and will provide medically-managed, 24 hour detox support to those aged 18 and over with an acute drug or alcohol dependence issue. 

Providing this type of support will help to reduce the need for emergency hospital admissions through the offer of planned, structured treatment.  The unit will also offer crucial on-the-job experience and training for medical and nursing trainees in the field of addictions.

Dame Carol said: “Local commissioning of in-patient detoxification and residential rehabilitation had decreased substantially in recent years, despite good evidence of their effectiveness and importance for people dependent on drugs and/or alcohol with particularly complex needs. I am therefore delighted to see Two Saints (a local housing association and service provider), and twenty local authorities, coming together with the Midlands Partnership NHS Foundation Trust to open this new residential Unit. It is sorely needed.”

Danny Hames, Head of Inclusion said: “I am delighted that, through our partnership with Two Saints and Local Authorities, we are able to open this life saving unit in Hampshire but serving the South of England. Many, many people are affected directly and indirectly by problematic drug and alcohol use and this unit will provide those who are most unwell with a service that can help them recover and provide the foundations for a drug and alcohol free future.”

Steve Benson, Chief Executive of Two Saints said: “We’re delighted to be working in partnership with Inclusion on this important service that will provide rehabilitation to people with complex drug or alcohol dependency and homelessness – and this is in line with our vision, which is to provide accommodation and support for homeless and vulnerable people, to help them build a brighter future.”

Councillor Liz Fairhurst, Hampshire County Council’s Executive Lead Member for Adult Services and Public Health said: “The harm caused by severe addiction to individuals, their families and the wider community cannot be underestimated. As the accountable organisation for overseeing the funding for this unit, I am extremely pleased that work has progressed at pace and the unit is poised to open, allowing for better access locally to detoxification treatment for those most in need.”