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Subutex (FOI)

Subutex (FOI)

Produced by the Freedom of Information office
Authored by States of Jersey and published on 17 June 2016.


Please can you answer the following questions:


What amount of illegally imported Subutex has been seized by Customs and Immigration in the past five years and what is the estimated street value?


How many individuals has the Health and Social Services Department treated with Subutex as a substitute for heroin abuse in the last five years?


How many individuals has the Drug and Alcohol Service seen in the past five years who have become addicted to Subutex and have received treatment for that?


How many prisoners residing at HMP La Moye are currently receiving Subutex medicine treatment?


What is the estimated cost per year of Subutex treatment in Jersey?


This response is provided by the Community and Constitutional Affairs Department and the Health and Social Services Department.


Customs & Immigration Subutex (buprenorphine) seizures from 2011 to date are 3,482 tablets with an estimated Jersey street value of between £139,280 and £278,560 depending on the size of tablets (usually 4mg or 8mg tablets). Approximately 37 grams of the drug in powdered form were also seized.



​​ ​ ​ ​ ​Individuals treated by Alcohol and Drug Service wtih Subutex by year

Note: Where clients have started, stopped and re-started Subutex treatment within the same year duplicate cases have been omitted.

The question asked refers to "Subutex as a substitution for heroin". As per the policy, Subutex is offered as a detox and not for maintenance.



Referrals to Alcohol and Drug Service with Subutex addiction​ ​ ​ ​ ​



As at 2 June 2016 there are two prisoners currently undergoing Subutex treatment at HMP La Moye.


In 2015, the total spent by the States of Jersey Prison Service on Subutex was £841.65 (including GST). This was spread over 8mg, 2mg and 0.4mgs tablets and was used to treat a total of nine prisoners. Some of these prisoners will have had repeated admissions to HMP La Moye during 2015.

In 2015, the Health and Social Services Department spent £336,448 on heroin substitute (including dispensing fees). A further breakdown will not be provided as the cost price of Subutex is commercially sensitive to the Health and Social Services Department and its suppliers. The information is therefore exempt under Article 33 of the Freedom of Information (Jersey) Law 2011.

Please note this does not include indirect costs such as staff time as this information is not held. Providing an estimate would require a substantial costing exercise which would exceed the 12.5 hour limit specified in regulations.

Exemptions and or refusals applied to this request:

Article 33 Commercial interests

Information is qualified exempt information if:
(a) it constitutes a trade secret; or
(b) its disclosure would, or would be likely to, prejudice the commercial interests of a person (including the scheduled public authority holding the information).

Regulation 2 (1) of the Freedom of Information (Costs) (Jersey) Regulations 2014 allows an authority to refuse a request for information where the estimated cost of dealing with the request would exceed the specified amount of the cost limit of £500. This is the estimated cost of one person spending 12.5 working hours in determining whether the department holds the information, locating, retrieving and extracting the information.

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