Addiction treatment group warning amid funding cut

A leading addiction group is on the verge of turning people away from its doors because a vital €19-a-day Department of Social Protection payment is no longer available.

Eileen Crosbie, treatment manager of Tabor Lodge in Cork City, issued the stark warning at the launch of the group’s annual report at Cork City Hall yesterday.

The senior official said the organisation — which helps people with alcohol, drug and gambling addictions, among other issues — has made savings to help ensure care given to more than 200 people a year can continue.

However, she warned “pressure on resources” means a sub-section of the group which helps women with addiction problems is struggling to cope.

Ms Crosbie said until March last year the Department of Protection provided €1,600 for a 12-week treatment programme for a small number of women who were initially seen at another facility but whose doctors felt they were in need of more specialised help.

However, the provision of the payment — which breaks down as €19-a-day — has been curtailed over the past 15 months, meaning people who would previously have been helped are now struggling to access the care.

“So far we haven’t turned away anyone, because when you’re down you’re down and you don’t need to be kicked any further down. But we’re struggling to cope with it,” said Ms Crosbie.

Concern over the funding issue was raised as the Tabor Lodge annual report for 2012 revealed alcohol addiction continues to be one of the main problems for people attending the support service.

According to the group, last year it helped 218 people with serious addiction problems.

*www.taborlodge.ie

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