Recovering Drug Addicts In South Korea Need More Support According To Patients

People suffering from drug addiction aren’t receiving the support they need according to a new report in Asia News. The report, which spoke to patients going through recovery in the nation state that the system in place isn’t conducive to leaving addiction behind and starting a new life in recovery.

Across the world there is a serious problem with drugs, and various countries have different support mechanisms in place to put patients through drug rehab and on a path to recovery, with the likes of the UK and parts of Scandinavia leading the way when it comes to care.

However, it seems as though South Korea is behind the curve, with many residents suffering preferring to go through private halfway house agencies to kick drug habits and recover without medical assistance. 

Lim Sang-hyeon, a former addict who helped found one of these halfway houses stated:

“I struggled to break the addiction because there wasn’t a proper system back then. I made the center to see and help those willing to live a new life. It’s like old caring for the young.”

Lim struggled to get the help he needed when struggling with drug addiction, injecting himself with philopon and methamphetamine, enduring problems with family life, as well as being jailed a number of times and serving 10 years in problem. 

Aged 57, he decided enough was enough, but he struggled to get the help he needed from the South Korean system, instead flying to Japan in a bid to create a facility for drug users in his homeland.

He added, “DARC is a private organization specializing in drug treatment and recovery made by a former Japanese drug addict, Tsuneo Kondo, in 1985. He made the recovery house 37 years ago in Tokyo for the first time to help addicts in poor living conditions and to prevent them from relapsing.”

He set up a DARC in Korea, with the country now having four, compared to just two rehab centres that are funded by the government, as Lim looks to battle the drug problem the nation has himself. 

The method of treatment is much different to centres and hospitals, with the latter not teaching people how to avoid situations involving drugs or how to get various difficulties, experiences that will occur while in recovery.

There has been a large amount of praise for Lim from the patients that are now using his DARC, and Lim himself is confident a better life now awaits for them, but financial aid and attention from public institutions still remains a major barrier if more people are to be helped with their drug addiction in South Korea.

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