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Diamorphine assisted treatment in Middlesbrough: a UK drug treatment case study

Poulter, H.; Moore, H.; Crow, R.; Ahmed, D.; Walker, T.


H. Poulter

H. Moore

R. Crow

D. Ahmed


Introduction: Diamorphine Assisted Treatment (DAT) is a treatment offer for individuals with Opioid Dependency (OD), who have failed to benefit from standard treatment model (Opioid Substitution Therapy [OST]). In the Middlesbrough DAT service, self-administered injectable synthetic heroin (diacetylmorphine) is offered to participants, twice daily under the supervision of medical staff in a controlled and safe environment. This case report evidences outcomes from the first operational DAT service in England outside of a research trial. Method: Descriptive quantitative data from participants who engaged within the first year of operation of DAT (n=14) is presented detailing engagement, harm reduction, and psychosocial outcomes, and criminality of the cohort. Results: The DAT service was associated with high engagement, a large reduction in positive toxicology screens for street heroin, reduced homelessness, increased engagement with psychosocial interventions and a substantial reduction of criminal offences. Poly-drug use (specifically the consumption of street tablets) impacted treatment engagement for a proportion of the sample. Conclusions: We present this work as an example of bottom-up policy making within the context of UK drug treatment and implications for practice discussed.


Poulter, H., Moore, H., Crow, R., Ahmed, D., & Walker, T. (in press). Diamorphine assisted treatment in Middlesbrough: a UK drug treatment case study. Journal of Substance Use,

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Aug 30, 2022
Online Publication Date Sep 13, 2022
Deposit Date Nov 9, 2022
Publicly Available Date Sep 14, 2023
Journal Journal of Substance Use
Print ISSN 1465-9891
Electronic ISSN 1475-9942
Publisher Taylor and Francis Group
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
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Accepted Journal Article (251 Kb)

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Copyright Statement
This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Journal of Substance Use on 13 Sept 2022, available at:

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