By; Mgandi Ngala.
The government has been challenged to reopen the Coast General Provincial Hospital Medical Assisted Therapy-MAT so as to treat and rehabilitate drug users at the Coast.
Reachout Center Trust Executive Director Taib Abdulrahman said that the government’s MAT clinic which provided Methadone, a liquid drug administered to treat drug users, was shut down two years ago leaving many drug users stranded despite them willing to disentangle themselves from heroin addiction.
Taib said that the only Mlaleo public methadone clinic at Bombolulu in Kisauni cannot accommodate the number of many drug users some of whom are injecting drugs.
He said that the methadone clinic located at the Coast general hospital assisted many youth doing drugs out of the menace and it could be very useful if it was operational.
He said that the circumstances under which it was shut down is still a puzzle.
“We are engaging the National Campaign Against Drug and Alcohol Abuse –NACADA so that the public rehabilitation centre can be reopened and provide methadone treatment to drug users,” added Mr. Taib.
Though he said that Mlaleo methadone clinic was very useful it has registered over 600 drug users and could not administer more because of its medium capacity.
“Frere town methadone clinic is to its capacity and a bit far as other drug users cannot afford transport charges to Bombolulu,” he said.
He added, “The one at Coast General hospital would serve drug users from various parts of Mombasa County as well as Kwale and those from Kilifi counties,” noted Mr. Taib.
He said that the government should also come up with initiatives to construct a female rehabilitation centre at the Coast since despite the number of female drug users increasing, there was no single rehabilitation centre for female.
Last year, the government launched plans to initiate a rehabilitation centre at Miritini NYS centre in Jomvu Constituency but the plans are yet to materialize.