A NEW integrated drug and alcohol treatment service has been launched in Hartlepool to help people reduce their levels of dependency.

The service, known as START – Supporting Treatment and Recovery Together, is a partnership between Hartlepool Borough Council and specialist clinical care provider Foundations.

Foundations has been providing services across Teesside for over 17 years, where it offers primary care, clinical support, treatment and interventions. Based in Whitby Street initially, the new service replaces the Council’s previous drug and alcohol treatment offer.

Sally Robinson, of the Council, said: “A lot of work has gone into setting up the new integrated service at a particularly challenging time given the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.The fact that we have been able to launch the service as planned is testimony to the hard work of everyone involved in the project and I would like to thank them for their efforts.

"We are delighted to be working with a partner of the calibre of Foundations, and together we aim to provide a clinical care and recovery support service that will help us to more effectively address the needs of local people.”

Harm reduction has been identified as a key priority for the new service.

Nicole Clark, of Foundations, said: "The team here at Foundations are delighted to be working in partnership with Hartlepool Borough Council to deliver a truly integrated drug and alcohol service for the people of Hartlepool."