NEW STATISTICS published by the HSE on drug misuse and other addicition issues have shown that there were 966 individual contacts made to Co Wexford services in 2011, and that almost 200 of the people treated were just 24 years of age or younger.
The Cornmarket Project in Wexford town dealt with the highest number of contacts, at 307 (32% of the total). Next highest was Aiséirí residential service with 224 people (23%), closely followed by HSE Substance Misuse Services at 203 people (21%).
Those figures were up on the previous year at both the Cornmarket and the HSE Substance Misuse Service. At the Cornmarket, there was a jump of 57 from the 250 people who received treatment in 2010, while the figure at the HSE Services represented an increase of 20 people. However the HSE says that a possible reason for the increase in the figures for Cornmarket may be 'a result of the Cornmarket Project increasing its outreach services to all parts of the county, where previously it serviced only Wexford town'.
While these two treatment centres experienced a rise in activity between 2010 and 2011, several experienced the opposite. The HSE Community Mental Health Service, for example, received 54 fewer contacts in 2011 than in 2010, a drop of 35%. Similarly Outreach workers saw a decrease of 33 individuals (40%) and Community Based Drug Initiatives saw a drop of 26 individuals (30%).
The HSE has also commented that the reduction in contacts to Community Based Drugs Initiatives may in part be due to the project in the north of the county not being resourced for part of the year. Also, the reduction in outreach worker figures may also be as a result of the Cornmarket Project increasing its services to the whole county, so that some who previously would have been treated elsewhere went there for help instead.