Preventive and treatment system in the Czech Republic


Preventive and Treatment System in the Czech Republic

Publisher: Mgr. Lenka Šťastná Ph.D. | Last update: 22.01.2014

In the Czech Republic, the system of prevention and treatment is ensured through a relatively complex system of funding as well as provision of care. As a whole, this system is described in a document entitled Scheme of the specialised addictology services network. Prevention in schools is coordinated by the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports. Addiction prevention itself (i.e. prevention of addictive substance use and its impacts) is then part of the wider concept of risk behaviour prevention. Harm reduction and risk reduction programmes form part of the wider concept of specialised addictology services, together with treatment programmes and aftercare.

Differentiated care provided to patients/clients with addictive disorders is ensured through a network of outpatient, day-care or inpatient (residential) services. From a formal perspective, specialised addictological care in the Czech Republic is defined through professional standards (or also quality standards) and what we consider to be specialised care is therefore limited only to care provided in organisations that have successfully passed through a proper certification process and have been evaluated using these standards.

In the Czech Republic, we may currently differentiate between health-related addictology care, further divided into medical addictological care (i.e. the field of addictive diseases) and paramedical addictology care (i.e., corresponding to the profile of paramedical qualifications of a healthcare professional – addictologist) and addictological care provided within social service programmes, in special education institutions (e.g. youth detention centres or educational care centres), or for instance in prisons. The individual types of specialised care require a close connection and combination of these approaches/perspectives, and in practice it necessary to maintain the complexity of these services as well as their inseparability; otherwise, the effectiveness of these specialised services is significantly reduced and they no longer correspond to the patients’ and clients’ needs.

Addictology care (within the meaning of the Scheme of the services network) is also characterised as specialised care whose only or dominant target group are clients and patients using addictive substances, addicted persons as well as pathological gamblers. The types of services are clearly defined by Quality Standards that are further developed in the Recommended Practices in the field of addictology. Besides this specialised care, the services are, of course, provided also by organisations/entities whose target group is defined more broadly (e.g. patients with a disorder from the sphere of psychiatric diagnoses which also include disorders caused by the use of addictive substances) or very broadly (all persons, e.g. the clients of a general practitioner for adults). We may furthermore distinguish between outpatient care and inpatient care, in different types of services according to the field/sector and according to the speciality.

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