Anti-drug campaign

OOAT clinics, de-addiction centres transform lives in dist

OOAT clinics, de-addiction centres transform lives in dist

Patiala, June 24

The anti-drug campaign of the Punjab Government has transformed lives of several addicted youth by providing them treatment. Following treatment, young men have now become the earning hand of their families.

After recovering through treatment from Red Cross Society’s Saket De-addiction and Rehabilitation Centre, a young man said, “The government’s de-addiction drive has given me a new life. I am farmer by profession. Now, I do all agriculture-related works on my own.”

“Chemical drugs not only exhaust body, rather in a state of intoxication there is also a tendency of taking to crime. Besides, drug overdose also proves fatal,” he added. Giving credit to Saket Hospital, he said the care and counselling given here transformed his life.

The OOAT (Outpatient Opioid Assisted Treatment ) clinics functioning in Patiala district are also proving a better way for youth to shun drugs and return to normal life and mainstream of society.

The District Nodal Officer of OOAT centres, Dr Sajila Khan, said, “Even during the Covid pandemic OOAT Centres are in touch with patients. Counsellors are giving patients full information about medicines and providing daily doses for 14 days so that they do not face any problem.”

A 50-year-old patient, who was receiving treatment at an OOAT clinic in Ghanour said after getting addicted to opium it was becoming difficult to survive financially and physically. “I contacted the doctor and counsellor. Now, I am feeling better. I am completely off the drug,” he said.

“These clinics treat patients addicted to opium, heroin, poppy husk, synthetic drugs and smack etc. Patients get treatment from specialist doctors, paramedical staff and counsellors. Patients are given medicine and taught yoga. Prayers also help patients move away from drugs,” Dr Khan added.

The Deputy Commissioner, Patiala, Kumar Amit, said Saket Hospital, Central Jail, Civil Hospital, Nabha, and CHCs at Samana, Rajpura, Model Town, Tripuri, Kalomajra, Bhadson, Ghanour, Dudhan Sadhan and Patran were among the 12 OOAT centres where 4,932 patients had registered so far. Many of them had recovered and living respectful lives, he added. — TNS

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