Page last updated at 16:51 GMT, Wednesday, 17 February 2010

Guernsey 'may need' drug rehabilitation centre


Guernsey 'may need drug centre'

Guernsey may set up a dedicated drug rehabilitation centre to deal with the effects of "legal highs", the Health and Social Services minister said.

Reports suggest between 50 and 100 islanders are addicted to a drug known as Mephedrone.

Deputy Hunter Adam said the cost of treatment off the island meant it could be time to set up one in the island.

He said it would depend on the cost of an on-island facility, compared to the off-island treatment currently used.

In November, when a ban on importing and exporting legal highs for personal use was introduced, the Health and Social Services Department said it had spent £400,000 during the first 10 months of 2009 on treating people who had developed depression, paranoia and psychotic symptoms as a result of taking the substances.

Since the ban, shops that were selling legal highs have closed down making it more difficult for users to get hold of the substances.

Rob Prow, customs chief officer said: "The effect of that ban has been dramatic and has reduced the amount of these substances coming into the island by a huge amount."

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