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Hidden Harm Toolkit for Drug and Alcohol Abuse

This strategy, complete with a practitioners toolkit is for use in the assessment and intervention with parents who are mis-using drugs and alcohol.


Hidden Harm

Six Key Messages (2003)

  1. It is estimated that there are between 250,000 and 350,000 children of problem drug users in the UK – about one for every problem drug user. This represents about 2 – 3% of children under 16 years old in the UK.
  2. Parental problem drug use can and does cause serious harm to children at every age from conception to adulthood.
  3. Reducing the harm to children from parental drug use should become a main objective of policy and practice.
  4. Effective treatment of the parent can have major benefits for the child.
  5. By working together, services can take many practical steps to protect and improve the health and well-being of affected children.
  6. The number of affected children is only likely to decrease when the number of drug users decreases.