PARIT – The National Anti-Drugs Agency (AADK) will hold discussions with the Health Ministry (MOH) on efforts to help the people overcome cigarette and alcohol addiction at the Narcotics Addiction Rehabilitation Centres (Puspen) nationwide.
Its director-general Datuk Seri Zulkifli Abdullah said the collaboration of the two agencies is believed to be helpful to those who have problems with cigarette and alcohol addictions as they (agencies) have the expertise in treating addictions.
“We are focusing on cigarette and alcohol addictions because these are serious addictions, so I believe this move can add value to the AADK’s services and facilities available at 31 Puspen nationwide,” he said at a press conference after officiating AADK Open Day and launch of Seri Iskandar Puspen here today.
He said AADK would expand its services with the role of helping those with cigarette and alcohol addiction problems as outpatients to receive treatment in the form of advice and counselling.
Zulkifli said his team would train AADK officers to be equipped with the ability to provide the best service in an effort to help the people live healthier lives.
In the meantime, he said the number of individuals who received voluntary treatment at 11 Puspen nationwide, which were offering the service, was only 17 per cent or 832 out of 4,938 people found involved in drug abuse last year.
He said records showed that those who received treatment voluntarily comprised civil and private employees, students and the unemployed.
“Therefore, employers who have staff with drug abuse problems should give them (staff) the opportunity to seek treatment by giving them leave and so on to ensure that they can be rehabilitated.
“Family members, especially parents should also ensure that anyone involved in drug addiction should seek treatment from an early stage and not wait until it gets worse before action is sought,” he said.
Meanwhile, Spring vocalist, Wan Aminuddin Wan Ismail or better known as Ameng, who is one of the programme participants, has recovered through voluntary treatment at Puspen Dengkil, Selangor.
Rocker Ameng performed at the event and urged those involved in drug addiction to seek treatment at Puspen because apart from providing a comfortable place, the centre also conducts a very organised programme and does not use force on trainees.