Friday, September 29, 2023

Professor Bobby Smyth

This podcast is essential listening for anyone interested in adolescent psychiatry and addiction services in Ireland.

Professor Bobby Smyth, Consultant in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, trained in Ireland and the UK, before taking up his current post in the Adolescent Addiction Services in South Dublin. He is a prolific author of peer-reviewed scientific articles, most recently about ‘head shops’, new psychoactive substances, and cannabis legalisation, and his PhD was in strategies to reduce the harms arising from youth substance misuse.

He is one of a small number of key medical figures in addiction medicine in Ireland and – in addition to being a Ministerial Appointment on the Oversight Committee of Ireland’s National Drug and Alcohol Strategy – he has had a wide range of other roles, e.g., with Alcohol Action Ireland, the General Population Survey Research Advisory Group for the HRB, the Editorial Board of the Irish Journal of Psychological Medicine, the Planet Youth Oversight Group for North Dublin, the Expert Group on Cannabis of the College of Psychiatrists of Ireland, and the Advisory Board of the International Academy on the Science and Impact of Cannabis

In this podcast, Bobby reflects on his ‘nomadic childhood’ and his training in child and adolescent psychiatry in Dublin and Merseyside, he recalls the devastating epidemic of heroin addiction in the inner city in Dublin in the 1980s and 1990s, along with the associated Benzodiazepine misuse, early tentative use of Methadone, ‘revolving door detoxification’, and gradual evolution of drug addiction treatment facilities in the capital and beyond, he highlights some surprising lessons from his sabbatical in Queensland (where he worked on a pioneering telepsychiatry service), and describes the current complex profile of adolescent drug misuse, particularly in the South, West and East Dublin/Wicklow areas.

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