Addaction to deliver Cornwall’s drug and alcohol service and launch innovative new project in county’s hospital

Addaction is set to delivery alcohol and drug services across Cornwall for the next five years.

The national charity has delivered the services in the county for the past five years to both adults and young people, and has successfully retained the contract with Cornwall Council.

Joint Commissioning Manager at Cornwall & Isles of Scilly Drug and Alcohol team, Kim Hager, said: “We would like to take this opportunity to congratulate the Addaction team and say how much we are looking forward to continuing to work with them. Thank you for an excellent five years of continually improving contract delivery and for working so constructively with us and I look forward to working together into the new contract.”

The contracts are worth £5.3m a year for the adults service and £335K for the young people’s service – delivered by YZUP. Addaction has bases in Redruth, Penzance, St Austell, Liskeard, Bodmin and Truro - where the YZUP service is also based.

The charity provides free, confidential and non-judgmental support to anyone affected by their own or someone else’s alcohol or drug use.

Associate director James Sainsbury said: “We’re delighted to continue our work in Cornwall and I want to congratulate the whole team on our excellent work.”

During the past five years, Addaction Cornwall and Isles of Scilly has supported 6,047 different adults and is currently providing a range of treatment and care for 1,899 adults in the county.

Addaction has also been successful in securing funding of £780,000 from the Government’s Life Chances Fund to set up a project in Cornwall to cut the number of people frequently attending the hospital A&E departments due to alcohol or drugs.

Known as ‘frequent attenders’, there is a group of people who take up a disproportionate amount of time, resources and finances for hospital A&E departments because of their regular attendance due to alcohol or drug use.

Addaction will be using a combination of assertive outreach, high intensity work and partnership work to get this group to address their use and attend less.

“Around 35% of A&E admissions are down to alcohol and by tackling the frequent attenders we can help the hospital free up their resources to help others. The work will involve linking in with people from housing, the police, the council and other professionals to make sure we’re addressing all their needs and issues at once,” said James Sainsbury.

The project will be launched thanks to the Life Chances grant which is used to set up a social impact bond that will continue to fund the project outcomes. To date Addaction has been awarded the largest contribution for it from Life Chances.

Addaction is the first substance misuse charity in the UK to run a social impact bond and the Cornwall project will be watched with interest by officials and researchers to see if it will work elsewhere in the country.

A pilot project has been running in Treliske A&E and it will officially launched with an extended service from April 1st.

James Sainsbury said: “No service in the UK has been able to fully address the issue of frequent attenders before. We’re hopeful this innovative approach will significantly improve the lives of this group of people and give a new way forward for other services across the country.”

Minister for sport and civil society, Tracey Crouch, said: ‘This funding will benefit some of the most vulnerable people in society and provide vital support to help them transform their lives.

'The UK is a world leader in using social impact bonds to make a positive impact in society and these projects will achieve real results in communities across the country.’

The Government Outcomes Laboratory (GoLab) based at Oxford University will be monitoring the effectiveness of this project as a funding model for care services.