Reading the news today and I was delighted to hear that the government has launched a voluntary drug rehab camp Phuket for locals who are abusing drugs. As many people may know there is a huge amphetamine problem in Thailand with locals and expatriates alike. According to the NNT (National News Bureau of Thailand) the camp will take 100 people at a time and operates a 14 day program.
The first half will be based on behavioral change and the second half focusing on vocational training.
Unfortunately 14 days is pretty short, but at least it looks like a move in the right direction of treatment rather then incarceration.
PHUKET, 27 February 2015 (NNT) – The narcotics control operation center of Phuket has opened a behavior-change drug rehabilitation camp in response to the government’s drug combat policy. The program was launched in line with the second strategy of the government’s narcotics control policy which is aimed at reducing the number of drug addicts. Those who are able to take part in the program must register for the rehab on a voluntary basis. The participants, who number around 100, mainly consist of drug users who were captured by security or administrative agencies. Twenty eight of them are Phuket residents while the rest are from other provinces. The 14-day program is divided into two parts. The first part, which takes nine days, focuses on behavioral changes of the drug addicts. The latter one provides them with vocational training.
As I stated above, 14 days is to short generally show any lasting behavioral changes in most peoples drug addictions and I am not sure what 5 days worth of vocational training is going to accomplish. That said I am extremely glad to see the government taking a proactive voluntary approach at addressing the problem. It does however say that the majority are people who have been captured/arrested, so I am sure there is coercion to get some to "volunteer" to go to the drug rehab camp Phuket program but thats generally the case on some level with the majority of people that go to a rehab centers. Family can twist an arm of someone struggling with addiction to go to a program just as well as the legal system can.
I hope after the first couple runs at the drug rehab camp Phuket that they start making it a longer program of at least a month or so and bring some experts in on the treatment, I am not sure who is running the program presently. There is a new masters degree program at Mahidol University in addiction studies so hopefully over then next few years we will have a number of culturally appropriate centers in Thailand focusing on the local population in Thai.
So at the moment a 14 day program in my opinion is way to short, it's a start and I am happy it is available.
We are presently trying to dig up how someone would sign up for the program and who they need to contact, as soon as we know I will update this post with the details.