Oscar is a consultant psychiatrist and honorary professor of the Faculty of Medical and Human Sciences, Institute of Brain Behaviour and Mental Health at the University of Manchester. He has more than 25 years’ experience working with patients suffering from addiction problems in both the public and private sectors.
“I was raised and educated in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and obtained my bachelor’s degree and medical diploma from the University of Buenos Aires in 1979. After graduation I spent six years training as a consultant psychiatrist and, after a further four years, was appointed Associate Professor of Psychiatry. I then practised and taught undergraduate and postgraduate psychiatry for several years at the University Hospital in Buenos Aires.
“During the ‘80s and early ‘90s I continued working in and teaching psychiatry, mostly focused on young people, borderline personalities and addictions. In 1994 I wrote my first book, Cocaine Addiction. This was the result of many years’ experience treating cocaine addicts; writing scientific papers; making many international presentations and chairing conferences on drug-related problems.
“In the early ‘90s I was appointed specialist adviser to the National Secretary of Drug Dependency and Drug Traffic reporting to the President. My role was to advise the government on policy and strategic issues related to drug treatment and to produce material on drug prevention.
“I also chaired an International Joint Programme for continuing medical education with Harvard Medical International, the international branch of the Medical School, Harvard University.
“I then moved to the UK, working first as medical director for a charity providing drug treatment in high security prisons in England and Wales and then as lead consultant in addictions for Buckinghamshire PCT, later merged with Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Mental Health Trust.
“In 2006 I met with David Royce and David Biddle from CRI to discuss our vision of present and future drug treatment in the UK. From the beginning we felt we shared the same vision and aspirations and I am proud to say that five years down the line we have achieved our most important target, providing clinical services of the highest quality wherever CRI is involved, particularly to the most isolated and deprived communities across England and Wales.
“We have developed very consistent and integrated clinical governance policies and we have set up a senior clinical management structure incorporating consultants, GPs, mental health nurses and former NTA senior officers, all of them with many years’ experience in senior roles in the field.
“I have the honour to lead CRI’s senior clinical management team, whose role is to ensure clinical excellence and ensure all our clinical governance policies and guidelines are implemented in every service.
“Today CRI is a leading provider of drug treatment in the UK and has a very good reputation for the quality of the interventions provided and its first-rate management team.”