Social Department :
in a regional workshop
on opioid substitution
Al-Maqdese delegation from the Rehabilitation
Department participated in a regional workshop titled “training of
trainers on opioid substitution treatment”, which was held from 16-14th
of April in Beirut; 12 Arab countries participated in the event. The
workshop was implemented and supervised by SIDC and MENAHRA, under the
auspicious of the Lebanese Ministry of Health. The workshop is one of a
series of workshops which aim at building capacities of the experts on
implementing harm reduction strategies.
Several countries started to implement the harm reduction strategy. It
is a set of legislative policies and programs which aim at reducing
health, social and economic harms of drug abuse, which has proven its
feasibility in all countries where applied. It is based on human rights,
as the addict is a human who has the right to maintain his health; not a
criminal but an ill person who needs health care.
The workshop covered one of the pillars of this strategy, which is the
opioid substitution treatment, an alternative treatment using opiates.
Despite the fact that there has been a lot of efforts and financial and
human resources used in the conventional rehabilitation and treatment
centers, failure of these efforts were identified to achieve quality
results in their treatment. Many of the addicts who got treatment has
relapses, even when they have long term treatments and have committed to
treatment; which results in the disappointment of their families and
also the treatment staff who has worked hard on their treatment.
Al-Maqdese was represented by the head of Social Department, Isam
Jweihan and the field work officer, Osama Abu Arram. Al-Maqdese is
implementing some components of this strategy in a project implemented
since two years from now, in cooperation with the Palestinian Ministry
of Health, Ministry of Interior, funded by the UNODC.
The workshop also covered a comprehensive and detailed presentation of
the alternative treatment program, its different types, application,
results and effectiveness on the individuals, the family and the society
as a whole, as well as the advocacy mechanisms and related obstacles.
The opioid substitution treatment is considered an effective way in
treatment rehabilitation and engagement of opioid addicts. It ensures
improvement of their life conditions and reduces the spread of epidemic
diseases such as AIDS, and reduces crimes and overdoses. This step would
be a mechanism provided for the addict to stop drug abuse completely.
It is important to mention that the participants in the workshop were
able to have open discussions and exchange experiences in the different
countries in harm reduction programs.