"Unhelpful treatment"

About: Telford STaRS

(as a friend),

In my opinion Telford STARS seems to be run by people who do not understand the science of drug metabolism as they have been found to frequently be unaware of specific metabolites of opiates and other drugs leading to many false negative tests.

On top of this, I have found them to be unhelpful and abrasive, and unwilling to help me because I don't fit their preconceptions of what someone battling addiction should be, calling me lazy and unmotivated for being unable to stick to their reduction plan, while the service offered me no support.

I have found it impossible to get any sort of actual medical help such as drugs to aid in the process of getting clean. This is especially true if I do produce a negative test, and as mentioned before, due to their limited scientific knowledge most tests come back negative. From my experience I would not recommend this service, overall I have found it demoralising and a contrived system of jumping through multiple hoops just to be turned away with nothing. 

More about:


Response from Michelle Astbury, Service and Clinical Lead, Telford Stars, Telford STaRS last week
Michelle Astbury
Service and Clinical Lead, Telford Stars,
Telford STaRS

Oversee the delivery of the Telford substance misuse services

Submitted on 16/11/2020 at 15:44
Published on Care Opinion at 15:44

picture of Michelle Astbury

Dear Deltawz96
Thank you for your feedback. I am so sorry your experience has been unhelpful and this is unacceptable. I would like the opportunity to work through your concerns with you but also outline some features of our service.

We are a commissioned service, as such there are certain services we are not able to provide that sit outside of our remit. If this is something that has been fed back to you it is important that you raise a concern with the local Clinical Commissioning group who have a responsibility to address any commissioning gaps in service provision. The number for Telford and Wrekin CCG is 01952 580300.

We are also governed by stringent clinical prescribing guidelines. In order to provide anyone a prescribing package to assist a person to detoxify off illicit drugs, we need to fulfil certain standards. These standards are national and are relevant for all substance misuse services. Screening for drugs of abuse is part of this standard. We use sophisticated screening methods that can detect the metabolites of many opiate preparations as well as define the difference between heroin and other opiates. If there is a conflict, which is rare, then we can test again. Any progression in treatment is a partnership with the commitment of the person who wants treatment to engage fully in the advice offered.

However I must stress that prescribing interventions are not always appropriate. The therapeutic work to support a person to make changes should always be the primary focus of any package of care and are very beneficial. I am sad that you feel you have been offered “no support”.

I would like the opportunity to discuss this further so I can address your concerns and revisit your treatment plan.

Please call me on 0300 456 4291 and take care

Michelle Astbury

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