A new report from the Centre for Policy Studies says that the present approach of methadone prescriptions for dealing with drug abuse is not working.
The report says that there are as many addicts today as there were 6 years ago, and the present system is costing the tax payer £3.6bn a year.
The author of the report, Kathy Gyngell, suggests that doctors should refer people to rehab centres rather than prescribe methadone which is normally the case. The cost of methadone scripts is around £730m a year and a further 1.2bn is spent on welfare costs for the addict’s dependants.
One spokesperson said that the emphasis now should be on offering support for people to choose a way out of dependence.