Mobile monitored consumption room guarantees financing for another month

The mobile monitored consumption room, which was at risk of going out of business due to lack of funding, will remain open for at least another month. According to the Treatment Activists Group (GAT), which manages the Mobile Surveillanced Consumption Program together with the non-governmental organization Médicos do Mundo, it was “possible to find a solution with the support of the Lisbon City Council to keep the project more a month, until there is a decision on the tender”, the structure told Expresso.

The interruption of the program – which has been operating in Lisbon since 2019 and is implemented in the parishes of Anjos, Olaias, Penha de França and Beato – was scheduled for this Friday, May 6. The decision to temporarily suspend the service had been taken by the two organizations that manage it due to lack of funding. 294 people are enrolled in the program, according to data provided to Expresso.

The program has a total of 294 registered users since 2019

During the first three years, the project worked as a pilot experience, with the support of CML. When that period ended, a tender was opened for funding by the Ministry of Health, to which the GAT and Médecins du Monde applied, but there is still no information on the results. “There is a gap here in terms of funding that should not have happened,” Adriana Curado, one of the project’s coordinators, told Expresso, before the CML’s decision was known.

On the occasion, the coordinator also explained that “in the last two months” it was the organizations that manage the project that ensured its funding, to prevent it from being interrupted. However, they realized that it would not be possible to continue to cover these costs and decided to suspend the service until there are results of the tender.

GAT expects “speedy resolution of the tender”

Funding from the CML will, however, allow the program to remain in operation until the 8th of May. The decision that the municipality took in this regard was communicated to the two organizations on Thursday, says the GAT in a statement published on its website. According to the note, the CML also made itself available “to finance the costs inherent to the two months in which the program was operating without financial support”.

“The decision of the municipality will allow the continuity of the program, without the damage that its interruption would imply for the people who use the service, also maintaining the gains in public health”, underlines the GAT, adding that it expects a “speedy resolution of the competition” promoted by the Service for Intervention in Addictive Behaviors and Dependencies (SICAD), of the Ministry of Health, “still ongoing”.

Source: Expresso by

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