Northern Irelands new Minister of Health highlighted the enormous burden of alcohol and drug misuse during the course of an extended visit to Cuan Mhuire’s new 102 bed treatment services centre in Newry on October 15th 2014.
Minister Wells pointed out that in 2013 over 350 people died from alcohol and drug misuse in Northern Ireland.
The cost of addiction-related problems to the North’s Health service is now £300 Million; the Minister added that the wider cost to the North’s public services and the economy is now approaching £1 Billion.
The Minister called for a much greater sense of responsibility across civic society. His key message, he said, was “We all have a responsibility to address the issues surrounding alcohol and drug misuse whether from a personal or familial point of view. Please do not be afraid to ask for help for yourself or even on behalf of a friend or a loved one. Support is readily available from the health service and in the community and voluntary sector which are playing an important role in this issue which impacts on every family, directly or indirectly, across Northern Ireland”.
Standing alongside Sr. Consilio - founder of Cuan Mhuire the largest addiction treatment service provider on the Island, the Minister said “I would like to take this opportunity to pay tribute to Sister Consilio, and all the staff and volunteers at Cuan Mhuire, for their unwavering spirit, determination and commitment to this issue.”
The Minister noted the contribution which further co-operation between the health’s services of Northern Ireland and of the Republic could make in tackling the common challenge of growing alcohol misuse, especially among young adults.
At any one time Cuan Mhuire has 600 people in treatment through their nationwide centres in Bruree, Co. Limerick; Farnanes, Co. Cork; Athy, Co. Kildare; Coolarne, Co. Galway and Newry, Co. Down.
A registered charity (CHY6648), with full ISO 9001:2008 Certification, our philosophy believes the place and setting within which the programme is offered is just as important as the programme itself. Cuan Mhuire also provides life skills and personal development within the treatment programme.