News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search


Public addiction treatment services "ineffective"

Media release – September 24, 20008

New Zealand’s public addiction treatment services ineffective – says top DHB treatment expert who moves to private Serenity Clinic

New Zealand’s public addiction treatment service is riddled with problems and not effectively treating addicts, an expert said today.

Nelson Sucgang, who has just resigned as specialist medical officer from the Waikato District Health Board, said there was too much bureaucratic influence and control that resulted in nothing done or very little being done.

``Meanwhile people with addictions and their families wait, and wait and suffer and wait some more. I just want the doctors and therapists to be able to do their job effectively and make a difference to people’s lives in the shortest possible time, he said today.

Dr Sucgang, an award winning addiction specialist, is taking up a new consultancy role at the private addict ion treatment Serenity Clinic which opened in west Auckland last month.

``What I have seen at Serenity is the courage to do things differently and to adopt innovative and holistic ways of providing treatment that is substantial, intensive, effective and enduring in an environment that treats its clients with dignity.”

Serenity Clinic was meeting a growing need in New Zealand to treat drug, alcohol, gambling addictions which were increasing annually.

Dr Sucgang has been the Waikato DHB’s addiction medicine specialist for last two and a half years dealing with addictions including medical detoxification relating to alcohol, opioids, methamphetamines and benzodiazepines.

He is one of only two members in Australasia of the American Board of Addiction Medicine.

``I am leaving the DHB because I want to make a difference in the addiction field. I want to see treatment really work. Serenity will make a difference because they care. To my knowledge, there is no other private in clinic in the country offering the kind of service.’’


© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


Howard Davis: Emerald Fennell's Promising Young Woman'

The Guardian needed not one, but three reviews to do justice to Fennell's unsettling approach, which indicates exactly how ambiguous and controversial its message really is. More>>

Howard Davis: Jill Trevelyan's Rita Angus

Although Angus has become one of Aotearoa’s best-loved painters, the story of her life remained little known and poorly understood before Jill Trevelyan's acclaimed and revelatory biography, which won the Non Fiction Award at the Montana New Zealand Book Awards in 2009, and has now been republished by Te Papa press. More>>

Howard Davis: The Back of the Painting

Painting conservators are the forensic pathologists of the art world. While they cannot bring their subjects back to life, they do provide fascinating insights into the precise circumstances of a painting's creation, its material authenticity, and constructive methodology. More>>

Howard Davis: Black Panthers on the Prowl

A passionate and gripping political drama from Shaka King, this is an informative and instructive tale of human frailty that centers around the charismatic Chicago Black Panther leader Fred Hampton, who was murdered at the age of twenty-one during a police raid. More>>

Howard Davis: Controlling the High Ground

Stephen Johnson's raw and angry film not only poses important questions with scrupulous authenticity, but also provides a timely reminder of the genocidal consequences of casual bigotry and xenophobia. More>>

Howard Davis: Dryzabone - Robert Conolly's The Dry

After the terrible devastation caused by last year’s bushfires, which prompted hundreds of Australians to shelter in the ocean to escape incineration and destroyed uncountable amounts of wildlife, The Dry has been released during a totally different kind of dry spell. More>>

Howard Davis: Hit the Road, Jack - Chloé Zhao's Nomadland

Nomadland is perhaps the ultimately 'road' movie as it follows a group of dispossessed and disenfranchised vagabonds who find a form of communal refuge in camp sites and trailer parks after the economic contraction of 2008. More>>



  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland