LSCBLocal Safeguarding Children Board Northamptonshire

Young People treated locally for Substance Abuse - latest figures

In 2014-15, Council on Addiction Northamptonshire (CAN) treated 189 young people in the county aged 18 or under with drug and alcohol issues.

The drugs the young people stated they had a problem with are shown in the table below. Many young people had a problem with more than one drug. The table below shows figures for the past two years:

Substances used by young people on entering treatment:
Drug: % in 2014-15 % in 2013-14
Cannabis 86.7% 87.8%
Alcohol 44.1% 45.4%
Legal highs (NPS) 16.9% 11.4%
Cocaine (exc. crack) 13.3% 7.4%
Amphetamines (exc. ecstasy) 9.7% 9.6%
Other drugs 7.2% 10.5%
Ecstasy 5.6% 5.2%
Hallucinogens 0% 1.7%

Cannabis and alcohol remain the most common substance problem. The number of young people seeking help for cocaine use has almost doubled in the last year. There has also been a significant increase in the number of young people being treated for ‘legal highs’ (Novel Psychoactive Substances) and this now appears to be above the national average.

CAN discharged 135 young people from treatment in 2014-15.

The table below provides the reason for discharge and compares the numbers with the previous year:

Percentages of young people discharged for different reasons

Reason for discharge: 

% in 2014-15

% in 2013-14

Successful completion  65.2%  64%
Incomplete – dropped out  17.8%  17.4%
Incomplete – declined by client  11.9%  12.9%
Transferred – not in custody  4.4%  2.8%
Transferred – in custody  0.7%  0%
Incomplete – retained in custody  0%  2.2%
Incomplete – treatment withdrawn by provider  0%  0.6%

The proportion of successful completions was slightly below the national average for 2013-14 and this is unlikely to change for 2014-15.

Further improvement plans for 2015-16

Improvements have been made to CAN in the last two years, including provision of clinics at both Northampton General and Kettering hospitals, and training for front line staff on identification, advice and referral.

Building on this, new planned improvements include:

  • Strengthening awareness and pathways with schools
  • Increasing capacity for treatment
  • Developing prevention capability within the service

In addition to the improvements to the CAN treatment service, an M-PACT programme will be rolled out. This will focus on early intervention with families suffering with substance misuse issues, aiming to reduce substance misuse and mitigate the impact on the family.

A four-year study will also be commissioned with the aim of strengthening the voice of the child in relation to substance misuse, both by young people and by the adults in their lives. This will take the form of a survey of young people’s attitudes to drugs and alcohol, followed by analysis and evaluation.

Find out more about CAN via their website

For further information, please contact the NSCB Business Office.


Last updated: 07 May 2015

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