Frontline staff and drug users are being sent potentially life-saving information packs over the next few weeks as part of a pre-Christmas initiative to prevent drug-related deaths during the high-risk festive season.
NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde staff, together with partner agencies and drug users themselves, have attended training sessions to hear first hand about the vital steps than can be taken to prevent overdoses. These included First Aid Techniques, Overdose Awareness, Suicide Prevention, and Methadone, Alcohol and Poly Drug Use.
Now the message is being sent even wider through new Information Wallets with contact details for drug services in the area, first aid/ recovery illustrations and overdose awareness advice, will be distributed to all drug services.
The aim is to raise awareness of the heightened risks of overdose and death over the holiday period when users may be feeling more vulnerable.
The information campaign has been organised by the Preventing Risk of Overdose in the Vulnerable Group (PROVE), a multi agency partnership supported by NHS GGC, Glasgow City Council, Scottish Drugs Forum (SDF), Greater Glasgow and Clyde Drug Action Team, Strathclyde Police, Scottish Association of Mental Health, Scottish Prison Service and several voluntary organisations in the city.
Jo Murray, Health Improvement Senior (Drugs), NHS GGC, said: “Last year in the Greater Glasgow and Clyde Health Board area there were 136 drug related deaths.
“This is a tragic statistic and we are doing everything possible to reduce this figure.
“The aim is to maintain reducing levels of fatal overdose and drug related suicides whilst ensuring that overdose risk and prevention maintains a high profile amongst both workers and service users.”
Neil Hunter, Joint General Manager of Glasgow Addiction Services, added:
‘Reducing drug related deaths is one of the biggest priorities for NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde and City Council.
“We want this information campaign to remind people of the importance of this issue, the practical steps people can make to reduce risk and the need for proper, effective and joined up treatment and care services that can help people on their recovery journey.”
For more information contact NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde Communications on 0141 201 4429.