Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS -

I WRITE on be­half of the Aus­tralasian Ther­a­peu­tic Com­mu­ni­ties As­so­ci­a­tion to high­light to read­ers that it is crit­i­cal more funds are re­leased to help Aus­tralia’s re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion cen­tres which are deal­ing with the con­sid­er­able is­sues sur­round­ing the use of ice and other drugs, in­clud­ing al­co­hol.

Sig­nif­i­cant quan­ti­ties of the drug ice are com­ing into Aus­tralian com­mu­ni­ties. With­out doubt, ice is read­ily avail­able in most parts of Aus­tralia, and par­tic­u­larly in ru­ral re­gions. It is a ma­jor is­sue.

We sup­port the gov­ern­ment’s clear fo­cus on ice. We also want to high­light that it is crit­i­cal more re­sources for res­i­den­tial re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion ser­vices are re­leased so that re­habs can get on and do what they do best – treat peo­ple.

We are highlighting that re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion cen­tres have sadly never been un­der more pres­sure. They are des­per­ately un­der-re­sourced. We ur­gently need to see more beds.

Of course, one of the great com­plex­i­ties is that some peo­ple have the view that a per­son’s depen­dence on ice can be han­dled through coun­selling ses­sions alone. This cer­tainly has not been our ex­pe­ri­ence. The sim­ple re­al­ity is that peo­ple with se­vere depen­dence and highly com­plex needs are best served in res­i­den­tial re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion.

I urge read­ers to ask their MP what are they do­ing to help in­crease the num­ber of beds for re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion cen­tres — and in­crease funds to as­sist these cen­tres.

Dr LYNNE MAGOR-BLATCH, ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer, ATCA.

En­sure your pool and its sur­rounds meet safety stan­dards.

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