Have all your questions answered on our FAQ page


We know from conversations with service users that having lots of information at your fingertips really helps to give people the confidence to pick up the phone or visit us. We hope our FAQs help. 

All treatment is completely free. EDP is commissioned by Devon County Council and Dorset Council to provide substance misuse services for free to residents of Devon and Dorset. Our services are also confidential. friendly and professional.

Our Together Devon service us for residents of Devon who are 18 or over.  Our Reach Dorset service is slightly different. It is  an integrated service which means we offer services (in partnership with EDAS) to young people and adults. Our services are for those who actively use drugs or alcohol so we are unable to help if you are abstinent. 

We know how upsetting it is for friends and family to see someone they love make bad decisions around their substance use. However, we cannot take a referral from a family member no matter how much we might want to. A family member must be ready to make positive changes to help themselves get better. Unfortunately, experience shows that unless we have this buy in, then no amount of help or support will make a difference. We also wouldn’t want to jeopardise an important relationship between our staff and your loved one if they aren’t aware that you have referred them and we call unexpectedly. We therefore need the person who is experiencing problems with drugs or alcohol to make contact themselves. We do however run family groups which can be enormously helpful for people struggling to know how to cope or what to do to support someone into recovery. Please check our groups page for details (Devon groups and Dorset groups) edp.org.uk/groups-in-devon or edp.org.uk/groups-in-dorset) or call our freephone numbers and ask for the family team. 

It’s really easy! You can call free on 0800 043 4656 if you live in Dorset or free on 0800 233 5444 if you live in Devon. You can email us at info@edp.org.uk or you can use our chat area on this website.

As part of the treatment planning process we will ask you who you want to be informed about your treatment. We only tell those people that you want. If you don’t want anybody to know, then that’s fine. Nobody else will be told – not your employer, not your partner or family, not unless you want them to know in order to support your through your recovery journey. There are a few specific reasons why we might share your information with partner agencies. You can find out more in our Privacy Notice. When you are assessed, a member of staff will talk through our confidentiality policy and be clear about when we might have to share information without consent.  

You will have two calls initially with our teams. The first is an assessment call which takes approximately 10-15 minutes. On this call our teams will speak with you about what is happening in your life and gather some basic information about you. They will explain about confidentiality and consent, so you know you’re in a safe and trusting environment. 

Your second call is a longer call and can be either over the phone or face to face. The call will look at all aspects of your life from criminal justice, mental health, social support needs, infection status for things like HIV and Hep C and we’ll look to see how we can best support you. Between you and the assessment worker, you’ll come up with a care plan and you’ll sign a contract with a suggested treatment end date. This can be extended later if your treatment takes a little longer. Your care plan will detail what groups you will attend, how often you will see your recovery worker and what other support tools you need. It is normally reviewed every 3 months.

It is a dynamic situation and will depend on how many people have referred in at any one time and how many people are actively in treatment with recovery workers as to how long you will have to wait. An average waiting time is anywhere between 1 week and 3 weeks

Your Recovery Worker is the person with whom you will have the most contact after you have done an initial assessment. It’s an important relationship and your Recovery Worker will be with you right the way through your recovery. They will listen to you, treat you with respect and you’ll know that you are safe and in good hands. Recovery Workers are trained to get you to think differently about many aspects of your life and they sometimes have to have difficult conversations with you. You’ll probably try a number of different recovery tools until you find one that works for you. If you need medication, then your Recovery Worker will liaise with our Prescribers to ensure that you are supplied with what you need at the dosage and frequency that you need it. If you read and listen to our Recovery Stories, you’ll see just how life changing the relationship between Recovery Worker and the person they support can be.

You will be given the number of your recovery worker, so you can call or email them if you are struggling. We also have a duty worker every day who can respond to your on the day support needs. They can be contacted by phoning our freephone numbers (0800 043 4656 if you live in Dorset or 0800 233 5444 if you live in Devon). There are emergency contacts on the home page of our website (www.edp.org.uk) and we have a chat on our website where you can leave a message and a memeber of staff will help you get to the right person. There are also lots of different groups designed to help people just like you to stay on track or get specialist support, so do look out for them on our website.

We are currently a 9-5 service with late opening in our hubs on specific days of the week. You can call us and leave a message and one of our duty workers will get back to you as soon as they can. If you do need immediate help please see our emergency contacts on the home page of our website.

There are a wide range of groups for different purposes. Some groups support people while they are waiting for specialist support, others are focused on stages of addiction ie relapse prevention… and some are focused on the substance ie alcohol support groups. There are groups for individuals in services and groups for family memebers. What they all have in common is that they are hugely beneficial because you hear from people in exactly the same situation as yourself and you share thoughts, emotions, what works, what doesn’t and there is authenticity and openness to what you say and how you support one another. Some groups are run by people with lived experience who have been trained to facilitate group work and others are facilitated by staff who may have an expertise in a particular subject. Please see our face to face and remote groups in Devon and in Dorset

How long your treatment takes depends on you and what we call your recovery capital – your own skills, capabilities and motivations to get better and find value and meaning to the next phase of your life. We do however work to tried and tested recovery pathways and a guide to how long treatment takes is as follows:
Moderate drinking – 12 weeks of support via group work, brief interventions and check in every 1-2 weeks with review periods every month
High lelve drinking – 3-6 months treatment programme of 1:1 with your recovery worker and groups work. Meeting every 2 weeks at the latest with reviews periods every month
Opiate users – 2 year treatment pathway of 1:1 with your recovery worker, group work and Opiod Substite Treatment (OST). Treatment is needs led and there are reviews every 12 weeks.

In Devon we are an adult service for people over the age of 18. If you are younger and would like support, please contact YSMART on 01271 388162 or email y-smart@devon.gov.uk. In Dorset we are a fully integrated service which means that we support both young people and adults. If you’d like help as a family please call our freephone numbers and ask to speak with a member of the family team

You will leave treatment once you and your recovery worker agree that you are ready. You will be supported whilst you begin the process of exiting treatment by one of our trained peer supporters, who will help you link into community activities and recovery networks so that you are ready to take your next steps.

EDP aims to provide services that fully meet the needs of service users and stakeholders. EDP values complaints and other feedback as a vital tool for developing and improving our services. We try our hardest to put people that use our services first in our minds at all times, but if our standards of service fall below what you expect you can make a complaint. Our complaints process is on our website and the forms that you need to make a complaint or just for feedback is linked there too.

If you’re a GP, health, mental health, housing or education  professional or any in any other professional capacity working with a vulnerable client who has a substance use issue, you can easily refer someone into our service. If the person lives in Dorset please use our Dorset online referral link

To refer into our Devon service please email the professional referrals team