THE DEATH of a 27-year-old man who overdosed on heroin has raised questions over drug and alcohol services.

Sam Caloe had battled with insomnia and addiction before he was found dead in his Horwich flat on October 29.

He was described as a "young man who was very bright and sadly didn't realise his potential".

He had told his mother, Susan Caloe, that he was making efforts to stop taking heroin and had called Bolton's Achieve drug and alcohol service himself to arrange an appointment.

Unfortunately, the meeting was set to take place on the same day that the young man was discovered by emergency services after a report from his mother who became concerned when he did not return her calls.

During an inquest into his death, Coroner Alan Walsh praised much of Achieve's work, but questioned policies around confidentiality after Mr Caloe's case was first closed several months earlier when he missed an appointment.

Normally, people sign a confidentiality notice meaning recovery staff cannot contact their family, but Ms Caloe and her son were said to be extremely close and open.

The coroner said: "What I'm concerned about is that on August 13 the guillotine went down and Sam was closed to the service without any contact to the family and without any visit to the address. I don't think that's right."

He added: "I am of the belief that sometimes these people need saving from themselves and that if you are in a situation where they say do you mind us contacting your mother, father or wife in future then if they fail to show up to an appointment you can contact a relative.

"It seems to me that Sam was very open with his parents, particularly his mother, and that if you had done that, you might have been able to contact his parents when he didn't come."

Simon Morton, operational manager at Achieve, agreed and said he would take the lessons learned from Mr Caloe's case back to his staff.

He said: "I'm going to go back to my service, talk to my staff and say to them, if you are closing a case, we need to check the confidentiality agreement.

"If the person doesn't want us to contact their relatives there's nothing we can do but if they say you can then we must do it because common sense says why wouldn't you."

He promised to send a letter detailing the work within 14 days.

Mr Caloe had struggled with self-harm when he was in school and had previously overdosed, but these were seen as "a cry for help" and had been several years ago. Mr Walsh was clear that the man's death was not an attempt to kill himself.

Toxicology reports found that Mr Caloe had morphine in his system as a result of taking heroin which was well over the level which would prove fatal to even a repeat drug user.

The coroner put this down to the fluctuating strength and purity of heroin sold on the streets and Mr Caloe's intermittent use - sometimes injecting himself for several days before taking a three or four day break - which would have impacted his tolerance to the drug.