ACT ATOD Sector Research eBulletin - October 2012
Our monthly ACT ATOD Research eBulletin is a concise summary of newly-published research findings and other research activities of particular relevance to ATOD and allied workers in the ACT.

Its contents cover research on demand reduction, harm reduction and supply reduction; prevention, treatment and law enforcement. ATODA's Research eBulletin is a resource for keeping up-to-date with the evidence base underpinning our ATOD policy and practice.



 
 
 


ACT Research Spotlight

What do women who inject drugs feel about their health?

A research team based at the National Centre for Epidemiology and Population Health at the ANU and UNSW drew on interviews with 83 Australian women who inject drugs and who are living with the hepatitis C virus [HCV], and examined their attitudes and priorities towards health needs and care. The interviews covered the women’s experiences of alcohol and other drug use, HCV diagnosis and care as well as contraceptive and reproductive histories. The researchers found that ‘…women discussed their health within broader contexts of drug dependence, unstable housing, unemployment, financial strain, other health issues and relationships. Concern about HCV was less pronounced than concerns about other health problems and socio-economic circumstances. Broadening the focus of health beyond drug use alone, women’s narratives strongly suggest that PWID [people who inject drugs] can and do care about their health’. They concluded that ‘Whilst research and policy often focus on health problems and barriers to health amongst PWID, the women in our sample maintained positive health beliefs and behaviours. Much like other members of society, their health priorities are contextualised by cultural, economic and political factors. This suggests that health interventions aimed at women who inject drugs could build upon the salience of a range of health priorities as well as integrating these with structural interventions designed to improve housing and economic status’.

Olsen, A, Banwell, C, Dance, P & Maher, L 2012, ‘Positive health beliefs and behaviours in the midst of difficult lives: women who inject drugs’, International Journal of Drug Policy, vol. 23, no. 4, pp. 312-8.

Comment: This important study by local researchers show what the drug user movement has been telling us for many years: people who use drugs care about their health. This reinforces the catch-phrase of health promotion: making healthy choices easy choices.

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Canberra Research Collaboration
 
Stakeholders are progressing a proposal to expand and strengthen alcohol, tobacco and other drug (ATOD) research in the ACT and region, and enhance ATOD policy and its implementation, through establishing a structured collaboration, such as a Centre for ATOD Research, Policy and Practice in the ACT. For more information please see the briefing. If you are interested in being involved please email Carrie Fowlie, Executive Officer, ATODA on carrie@atoda.org.au or (02) 6255 4070.

Funding announcement
Attorney General, Simon Corbell, has recently announced that, as part of the dissemination of proceeds from the Confiscated Assets Trust Fund, $10,000 will be awarded to Alcohol Tobacco and Other Drug Association ACT (ATODA) to strengthen evidence based responses to alcohol and other drug related harms which can support the work of the collaboration.

For more information: See the press release

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Research Findings

How beneficial is the self-medication hypothesis for people with psychiatric disorders?

Are children whose care-givers abuse alcohol or other drugs more likely to suffer maltreatment?

How effective are community interventions in reducing alcohol-related assaults?

How effective is the implementation of alcohol-related harm-reduction strategies in Australian sports clubs in reducing alcohol-impaired driving?

How easy is it for people below the minimum drinking age to obtain alcohol from self-checkout lanes in supermarkets?

What are the effects of consuming alcohol mixed with energy drinks?

How dangerous are the synthetic cannabanoids?

Are students with a family history of alcohol problems more likely to have substance use problems themselves?

Is regular cannabis use likely to harm the brain?

How effective are telephone-based interventions in assisting people to reduce cannabis use?

Are drug treatment and recovery systems cost effective?

Do in-prison therapeutic communities reduce the likelihood of recidivism?

Is overdose education and naloxone distribution beneficial for people who take methadone?

Is drinking coffee bad for your health?

What do women who inject drugs feel about their health?



Note: Most of the reports and research items referenced below are available from the Alcohol and Other Drug Council of Australia’s National Drugs Sector Information Service (NDSIS).
 

How beneficial is the self-medication hypothesis for people with psychiatric disorders?

‘Background: The Self-Medication Hypothesis (SMH) of addictive disorders as articulated by Edward Khantzian in his seminal 1985 paper postulates that individuals with psychiatric disorders use substances to relieve psychiatric symptoms and that this pattern of usage predisposes them to addiction. Khantzian’s SMH also postulates that the preferred substance is not random, but is based on the unique pharmacological properties of the substance. For example, an individual with attention deficit disorder would prefer amphetamines to alcohol, due to its stimulating properties, whereas an individual with anxiety would prefer alcohol to amphetamines, due to its anxiolytic properties. Finally, Khantzian’s SMH implies that treating the underlying psychiatric disorder will improve or resolve the problems of addiction.

Aims and Results: A review of the scientific literature demonstrates a striking lack of robust evidence in support of the SMH as put forth by Khantzian.

Conclusions and Scientific Significance: Nonetheless, the SMH has had a profound influence on medical and lay culture, as well as clinical care. Although originally formulated as a compassionate explanation for addiction in those with psychiatric disorders, the SMH does not provide, as originally intended, a “useful rationale” for guiding treatment and instead has led to under-recognition and under-treatment of substance use disorders.’
Lembke, A 2012, ‘Time to abandon the self-medication hypothesis in patients with psychiatric disorders’, American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse, online ahead of print.

Comment: The self-medication hypothesis appears to be a ‘scientific weed’: something that everyone knows and believes, but for which there is little empirical evidence. The authors’ conclusion, that it causes inadequate substance use disorder treatment, is compelling.

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Are children whose care-givers abuse alcohol or other drugs more likely to suffer maltreatment?

Research using data from child protection services (CPS) in Victoria examined whether care-giver alcohol abuse is associated with recurrent child maltreatment, and whether alcohol abuse or other drug abuse plays a stronger role. Almost thirty thousand repeat cases of child maltreatment between 2001 and 2005 were analysed. The researchers found ‘Children from families where care-giver alcohol abuse was identified were significantly more likely to be affected by recurrent child abuse. As the percentage of children from families with care-giver alcohol abuse increased, so did the proportion of children affected by recurrent child abuse. Care-giver alcohol abuse and other drug abuse were both associated independently with recurrence and were roughly equal in their ability to predict recurrence. Social and demographic variables were also imported predictors of child maltreatment recurrence’.

Laslett, A-M, Room, R, Dietze, P & Ferris, J 2012, ‘Alcohol’s involvement in recurrent child abuse and neglect cases’, Addiction, vol. 107, no. 10, pp. 1786-93.

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How effective are community interventions in reducing alcohol-related assaults?

 ‘Alcohol has consistently been demonstrated to increase levels of aggression and violence, particularly in late night licensed venues. Since 2005, the City of Geelong in Australia has implemented a substantial number of interventions to reduce alcohol related violence, including a liquor accord, increased police surveillance, ID scanners, CCTV, a radio network and an alcohol industry sponsored social marketing campaign. The aim of the current study is to assess the individual and collective impact of community interventions on indicators of alcohol-related assaults in the Geelong region. This paper reports stage one findings from the Dealing with Alcohol-related problems in the Night-time Economy project (DANTE) and specifically examines assault rate data from both emergency department presentations, ICD-10 classification codes, and police records of assaults. None of the interventions were associated with reductions in alcohol-related assault or intoxication in Geelong, either individually or when combined. However, the alcohol industry sponsored social marketing campaign ‘Just Think’ was associated with an increase in assault rates. Community level interventions appeared to have had little effect on assault rates during high alcohol times. It is also possible that social marketing campaigns without practical strategies are associated with increased assault rates. The findings also raise questions about whether interventions should be targeted at reducing whole-of-community alcohol consumption.’

Miller, PG, Sønderlund, AL, Coomber, K, Palmer, D, Tindall, J, Gillham, K & Wiggers, J 2012, ‘The effect of community interventions on alcohol-related assault in Geelong, Australia’, The Open Criminology Journal, vol. 5, pp. 8-15.

Comment: This finding from the Geelong initiative, while disappointing, reminds us of how little we know about prevention in the AOD field. It also highlights the frequently-observed failure (or worse) of alcohol industry initiatives that purport to have the objective of preventing alcohol-related problems.

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How effective is the implementation of alcohol-related harm-reduction strategies in Australian sports clubs in reducing alcohol-impaired driving?

The Good Sports program, which is funded by the Commonwealth and state governments, has been developed to reduce risky alcohol consumption and alcohol impaired driving in Australian community sports clubs. It uses a systematic accreditation process to implement gradual alcohol-related harm-reduction strategies in clubs. A team of researchers based in Victoria conducted a pilot study with 65 cricket and 48 AFL clubs, examining associations between the stage of accreditation of the club and the likelihood of driving with an illegal blood alcohol concentration (BAC). They found that ‘The percentage of club members driving at least once in the previous week with a BAC estimate greater than .05%...was lower in clubs that had achieved Stage 2 Good Sports accreditation…than those that had not…but this was not [statistically] significantly different. However, multilevel modeling identified a larger number of the safe-transport strategies, implemented as part of Stage 2 accreditation, which were associated with a significantly lower probability of drink driving’. They concluded that ‘The findings of this pilot study suggest that implementation of the Good Sports program is likely to have a significant effect on harms associated with drink driving in Australia and elsewhere’.

Rowland, B, Toumbourou, JW & Allen, F 2012, ‘Reducing alcohol-impaired driving in community sports clubs: evaluating the good sports program’, Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs, vol. 73, no. 2, pp. 316-27.

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How easy is it for people below the minimum drinking age to obtain alcohol from self-checkout lanes in supermarkets?

A study undertaken by researchers from the Center for Alcohol and Drug Studies, San Diego State University, California, examined how easily young adults could purchase alcoholic beverages through self-checkout (SCO) lanes in supermarkets without being asked for age verification. The study involved 216 stores with self-checkout lanes randomly selected in five Southern California counties, in each of which pseudo-patrons independently judged to be 23 years of age or younger purchased alcohol. The findings were that ‘Overall, 8.8% of all purchase observations resulted in a failure to ask for identification to purchase alcohol’. The researchers concluded that ‘The growing number of self-checkout options at supermarkets can be a potential source of alcohol for minors; however, the risk they pose is similar to that of traditional checkout purchases. Policies relating to the purchase of alcohol at any store, regardless of checkout type, should be modified so that every purchase of alcohol requires an identification card to be swiped regardless of age’.

Clapp, JD, Martell, B, Woodruff, S & Reed, MB 2012, ‘Evaluating self-checkout lanes as a potential source of alcoholic beverages for minors’, Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs, vol. 73, no. 5, pp. 713-7.

Comment: For many years liquor availability has been increasing in Australia. This study from the USA reminds us of the need to balance commercial imperatives such as self-checkouts in supermarkets with population health imperatives such as limiting young people’s access to alcohol.

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What are the effects of consuming alcohol mixed with energy drinks?

It is becoming increasingly common for young people to consume alcohol mixed with energy drinks (AmED). This has raised concern regarding ‘…potential increases in maladaptive drinking practices, negative psychological and physiological intoxication side effects, and risky behavioral outcomes’. An Australian study conducted in 2011 involved 403 young people who had consumed AmED in the previous six months completing an on-line survey about their use of these beverages. The study revealed that ‘Despite participants consuming a significantly greater quantity of alcohol in AmED sessions compared to alcohol sessions, the odds of participants experiencing disinhibition and engaging in 26 risk behaviors were significantly lower during AmED sessions relative to alcohol sessions. Similarly, the odds of experiencing several physiological (i.e., speech and walking difficulties, nausea, and slurred speech) and psychological (i.e., confusion, exhaustion, sadness) sedation outcomes were less during AmED sessions compared to alcohol sessions. However, the odds of enduring physiological (i.e., heart palpitations, sleep difficulties, agitation, tremors, jolt and crash episodes, and increased speech speed) and psychological (i.e., irritability and tension) outcomes potentially related to overstimulation were significantly greater during AmED sessions than alcohol sessions.’ The researchers concluded that ‘The increased stimulation from energy drinks…may negate some intoxication-related sedation side effects by increasing alertness. However, it could also lead to negative physiological side effects associated with overstimulation…the odds of engaging in risk-taking were less during AmED sessions relative to alcohol sessions’.

Peacock, A, Bruno, R & Martin, FH 2012, ‘The subjective physiological, psychological, and behavioral risk-taking consequences of alcohol and energy drink co-ingestion’, Alcoholism, Clinical and Experimental Research, online ahead of print.

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How dangerous are the synthetic cannabinoids?

Research undertaken in Freiberg, Germany, aimed to characterise the acute toxicity of synthetic cannabinoids in herbal mixtures consumed as recreational drugs as an alternative to cannabis. The study group comprised patients who sought emergency treatment after using synthetic cannabinoids. The researchers found that ‘Tachycardia, agitation, hallucination, hypertension, minor elevation of blood glucose, hypokalemia and vomiting were most frequently reported. Chest pain, seizures, myoclonia and acute psychosis were also noted’. They concluded ‘There appears to have been an increase in use of the extremely potent synthetic cannabinoids JWH-122 and JWH-210. Acute toxic symptoms associated with their use are also reported after intake of high doses of cannabis, but agitation, seizures, hypertension, emesis and hypokalemia seem to be characteristic to the synthetic cannabinoids, which are high affinity and high efficacy agonists of the CB1 receptor. Thus, these effects are probably due to a strong CB1 receptor stimulation’.

Hermanns-Clausen, M, Kneisel, S, Szabo, B & Auwärter, V 2012, ‘Acute toxicity due to the confirmed consumption of synthetic cannabinoids: clinical and laboratory findings’, Addiction, online ahead of print.

Comment: All Australian governments have made legislative amendments that create offences of supplying, possessing and, in most cases, consuming various synthetic cannabinoids. In doing so they have applied the precautionary principle as little information is available about the extent and nature of adverse consequences of consuming these drugs. This paper provides further evidence supporting preventive interventions relating to these drugs.

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Are students with a family history of alcohol problems more likely to have substance use problems themselves?

A meta-analysis on the effects of family history on substance use and abuse in college and university students examining data from five countries found that ‘Family history had a minimal effect on alcohol consumption, with stronger effects on alcohol consequences…alcohol use disorder symptoms…and other drug involvement’. The researchers concluded that ‘Relative to students without a family history of alcohol problems, students with positive family histories do not drink more, but may be at greater risk for difficulties with alcohol and drugs’.

Elliott, JC, Carey, KB & Bonafide, KE 2012, ‘Does family history of alcohol problems influence college and university drinking or substance use? A meta-analytical review’, Addiction, vol. 107, no. 10, pp. 1774-85.
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Is regular cannabis use likely to harm the brain?

‘Recent reports show that fewer adolescents believe that regular cannabis use is harmful to health. Concomitantly, adolescents are initiating cannabis use at younger ages, and more adolescents are using cannabis on a daily basis. The purpose of the present study was to test the association between persistent cannabis use and neuropsychological decline and determine whether decline is concentrated among adolescent-onset cannabis users. Participants were members of the Dunedin Study, a prospective study of a birth cohort of 1,037 individuals followed from birth (1972/1973) to age 38 y. Cannabis use was ascertained in interviews at ages 18, 21, 26, 32, and 38 y. Neuropsychological testing was conducted at age 13 y, before initiation of cannabis use, and again at age 38 y, after a pattern of persistent cannabis use had developed. Persistent cannabis use was associated with neuropsychological decline broadly across domains of functioning, even after controlling for years of education. Informants also reported noticing more cognitive problems for persistent cannabis users. Impairment was concentrated among adolescent-onset cannabis users, with more persistent use associated with greater decline. Further, cessation of cannabis use did not fully restore neuropsychological functioning among adolescent-onset cannabis users. Findings are suggestive of a neurotoxic effect of cannabis on the adolescent brain and highlight the importance of prevention and policy efforts targeting adolescents.’

Meier, MH, Caspi, A, Ambler, A, Harrington, H, Houts, R, Keefe, RSE, McDonald, K, Ward, A, Poulton, R & Moffitt, TE 2012, ‘Persistent cannabis users show neuropsychological decline from childhood to midlife’, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, online ahead of print.

Comment: This important longitudinal study provides further evidence about the importance of preventing, or at least delaying, the uptake of cannabis by adolescents.

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How effective are telephone-based interventions in assisting people to reduce cannabis use?

Researchers from the National Cannabis Prevention and Information Centre and the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre, both at the University of New South Wales, evaluated the efficacy of a telephone-based intervention consisting of four sessions of motivational interviewing and cognitive behavioural therapy designed to assist individuals to reduce their cannabis use and related problems. Counsellors from the Cannabis Information and Helpline delivered the intervention to callers seeking treatment. The researchers found that ‘…this four-session intervention resulted in significantly greater reductions in measures of cannabis-related problems and dependence severity at 4 and 12 weeks, compared with a delayed treatment control’. They concluded that ‘A brief course of motivational interviewing plus cognitive behavioural therapy delivered by telephone can help to reduce cannabis dependence and promote abstinence in the short term’. A benefit of this approach is that ‘A telephone-based cannabis treatment (without face-to face interaction) can be delivered over wide areas where other services are limited, and to those who might prefer the anonymity of such an intervention’.
Gates, PJ, Norberg, MM, Copeland, J & Digiusto, E 2012, ‘Randomized controlled trial of a novel cannabis use intervention delivered by telephone’, Addiction, online ahead of print.

Comment: Treatment approaches using the telephone and new communication technology such as email, texting and the internet show great promise in terms of cost-effective service for far more people than could be treated face-to-face.

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Are drug treatment and recovery systems cost-effective?

A recent publication by the National Treatment Agency for Substance Misuse in the United Kingdom states that ‘We estimate that drug treatment and recovery systems in England may have prevented approximately 4.9m crimes in 2010-11, with an estimated saving to society of £960m in costs to the public, businesses, the criminal justice system and National Health Service (NHS). We also estimate that approximately 19.6m crimes may be prevented...[between 2011-12 to 2014-15], with an estimated saving to society of £3.6bn’.

‘In addition we estimate that up to a further 4.1m offences may be prevented over a nine year period…because we estimate that 13,702 people who left treatment in 2010-11 will go on to sustain long term recovery, with an estimated value of £700m…The model also helps us to estimate the potential impact of disinvestment in adult drug treatment. We estimate that, all else being equal, for every £1m taken out of the system there could be an increase of approximately 9,860 drug-related crimes per year at an estimated cost to society of over £1.8m.’

National Treatment Agency for Substance Misuse 2012, Estimating the crime reduction benefits of drug treatment and recovery, National Treatment Agency for Substance Misuse, London, .

Comment: This study from a respected UK Government agency comes at a time when UK drug treatment services are being dismantled on the basis of an ideologically-driven ‘recovery’ and payment-by-results agenda. We need to look out for such forces in Australia, and counter them with this type of evidence.

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Do in-prison therapeutic communities reduce the likelihood of recidivism?

Researchers from the University of Idaho, USA, examined the effect of in-prison therapeutic communities [TC], delivered in multiple sites, on the likelihood of rearrest and reconviction for male inmates up to 4 years after release from prison in three public prisons and one private prison in the state of Idaho. They found that ‘…completing therapeutic community had a significant effect on reducing the likelihood of rearrest for inmates with moderate probabilities of being classified as in need of therapeutic community programming. Therapeutic community did not have significant effects on reducing reconvictions’.

Their conclusion was that ‘…as implemented in the state of Idaho, in-prison TC and mandatory after-care significantly reduced the rearrests of medium–high and medium risk males for up to 4 years after release from prison. This finding is in general agreement with the TC research in Delaware and Texas. The Pennsylvania research found positive effects of TC on reducing rearrest and reincarceration without aftercare…We encourage corrections personnel to implement TC programming in prisons that house offenders who can benefit from it…Continuing TC programming during aftercare is also recommended…Finally, we encourage policy makers to expand community-based alternatives to in-prison substance abuse treatment for minor offenders. These alternatives could include drug courts…, in-community substance abuse treatment…and community-based TC programming…Alternatives to incarceration for  minor offenders reduce financial costs, avoid the deleterious stigma of ex-inmate, and allow the individual to maintain or establish conventional ties in the community’.

Jensen, EL & Kane, SL 2012, ‘The effects of therapeutic community on recidivism up to four years after release from prison: a multisite study’, Criminal Justice & Behavior, vol. 39, no. 8, pp. 1075-87.

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Is overdose education and naloxone distribution beneficial for people who take methadone?

‘Overdose education and naloxone distribution (OEND) is an intervention that addresses overdose, but has not been studied among people who take methadone, a drug involved in increasing numbers of overdoses… OEND programs are public health interventions that address overdose risk among people who take methadone and their social networks. OEND programs can be implemented in MMTPs [methadone maintenance treatment programs ], detoxification programs, and HIV prevention programs…People who take methadone have high rates of overdose risk factors and high exposure to witnessed overdose, and can use naloxone to reverse an overdose.’

Researchers in Boston, USA, reported on a study which describes the implementation of OEND among people taking methadone in Massachusetts. From 2008 to 2010, 1,553 participants who had taken methadone in the past 30 days received overdose education and naloxone distribution. Settings included inpatient detoxification (47%), HIV prevention programs (25%), methadone maintenance treatment programs (17%) and other settings (11%). Previous overdose, recent inpatient detoxification and incarceration, and polysubstance use were overdose risks factors common among all groups. Participants reported 92 overdose rescues. The researchers recommend ‘In the current context of a national overdose epidemic, OEND should be offered to potential overdose bystanders, including methadone taking individuals, with or without support from MMTPs and detox programs’.
Walley, AY, Doe-Simkins, M, Quinn, E, Pierce, C, Xuan, Z & Ozonoff, A 2012, ‘Opioid overdose prevention with intranasal naloxone among people who take methadone’, Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment, online ahead of print.

Comment: The ACT’s opioid overdose education and naloxone program (Implementing Expanded Naloxone Availability in the ACT (IENAACT) is currently being conducted—Australia’s first. This study suggests that people in opioid detox and treatment programs could be among the priority population groups for this initiative.

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Is drinking coffee bad for your health?

Research reported in the New England Journal of Medicine examined the association of coffee drinking with subsequent total and cause-specific mortality among 229,119 men and 173,141 women in the US National Institutes of Health-AARP Diet and Health Study who were 50 to 71 years of age at baseline. Participants with cancer, heart disease, and stroke were excluded. After adjusting for factors such as tobacco smoking, the researchers found ‘…significant inverse associations of coffee consumption with deaths from all causes and specifically with deaths due to heart disease, respiratory disease, stroke, injuries and accidents, diabetes, and infections’. That is, the risk of death for people who drank coffee was less than for people who did not drink coffee. They comment ‘Our results provide reassurance with respect to the concern that coffee drinking might adversely affect health’.

Freedman, ND, Park, Y, Abnet, CC, Hollenbeck, AR & Sinha, R 2012, ‘Association of coffee drinking with total and cause-specific mortality’, New England Journal of Medicine, vol. 366, no. 20, pp. 1891-904.

Comment: While this study was not able to assess any causal links between coffee consumption and health, and certainly does not provide conclusive evidence that coffee is good for the health, it reminds us how complex causality is in the ATOD field, and the need to question those who jump to conclusions about A causing B on the basis of weak or non-existent evidence.

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New Reports

Australian Bureau of Statistics 2012, Population characteristics, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians, Australian Capital Territory, 2006, Australian Bureau of Statistics.

Australian Institute of Health and Welfare 2012, Social distribution of health risks and health outcomes: preliminary analysis of the National Health Survey 2007-08, cat. no. PHE 165, Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, Canberra.

Australian National Council on Drugs 2012, ANCD position Statement: expanding naloxone availability, September 2012, ANCD, Canberra.

Boston Consulting Group and Janssen Australia 2012, The economic impact of hepatitis C in Australia, The Boston Consulting Group, np.

Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education (FARE) 2012, The Australian Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Action Plan 2013–2016, Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education (FARE), Canberra.

National Health & Medical Research Council 2012, Alcohol Data Workshop: a workshop of the National Health and Medical Research Council, 7 March 2012, National Health & Medical Research Council, Canberra.

Recovery Academy Australia 2012, Principles of Recovery Academy Australia, Recovery Academy Australia, Melbourne.

Sweeney, J & Payne, J 2012, ‘Initiation into drug use’ addendum: findings from the DUMA program, Research in Practice DUMA no. 28, Australian Institute of Criminology, Canberra.

Western Australian Network of Alcohol and other Drug Agencies (WANADA) 2012, Standard On Culturally Secure Practice (Alcohol and other Drug Sector), Western Australian Network of Alcohol and other Drug Agencies (WANADA), Perth.

For information on other reports, please visit the ‘Did you see that report?’ page at the website of the National Drugs Sector Information Service
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Call for Abstracts
 
Victorian Alcohol and Drug Association Conference 2013
Abstracts are sought for the Victorian Alcohol and Drug Assocation Conference which speak to the theme 'Broadening the Focus'. Proposals for oral presentations (20 minutes), workshops (60 minutes) and poster presentations that are original, creative and thought-provoking are also sought.
Acceptances close: 22 October 2012
For more information: See VADA's website, email jmorris@vaada.org.au or dtalyor@vaada.org.au or call (03) 9412 5504

6th Australasian Drug and Alcohol Strategy Conference
Abstracts are invited from anyone who has, or is, conducting original research and program evaluations or has case studies that highlight effective policing and community responses to drug and alcohol misuse. Abstracts should be no more than 300 words in length and should be structured in a way that describes the aim, method, results and conclusions of the paper. 
Acceptances close: 31 October 2012
For more information: See the website or email abstracts@adasc2013.com

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Australian Treatment Outcomes Study – searching for previous participants

Did you have clients who participated in the Australian Treatment Outcomes Study between 2001 and 2002? The study by the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre recruited 615 people in NSW who were in treatment for heroin dependence. They were followed up three years later.
Now, funding has been received from the National Health and Medical Research Council to conduct a further 11-year follow-up of these individuals, tracking the long-term trajectory of heroin dependence.
If you or your clients were involved in the original ATOS study, please contact Jo at NDARC on (02) 9385 0304 or 0477 426 503 or email joanne.white@unsw.edu.au
 
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Centre for Alcohol Policy Research launched

The Centre for Alcohol Policy Research (CAPR) is an innovative, world-renowned research facility at the forefront of informed alcohol policy development. CAPR is a joint undertaking of the Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education (FARE), Turning Point Alcohol and Drug Centre, the Victorian Government, and the University of Melbourne. Based in Melbourne and led by Professor Robin Room, CAPR is unlike any other research facility in Australia, as its sole focus is on building the evidence-base on alcohol issues. This places CAPR at the forefront of informed alcohol policy development in Australia. CAPR’s research discoveries can be promoted to inform the best, most effective alcohol-policy in Australia.

For more information: See the Centre's website

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Contact ATODA:

Phone: (02) 6255 4070
Fax: (02) 6255 4649
Email: info@atoda.org.au
Mail: PO Box 7187,
Watson ACT 2602
Visit: 350 Antill St. Watson

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The Alcohol Tobacco and Other Drug Association ACT (ATODA) is the peak body representing the non-government and government alcohol, tobacco and other drug (ATOD) sector in the Australian Capital Territory (ACT). ATODA seeks to promote health through the prevention and reduction of the harms associated with ATOD. 

Views expressed in the ACT ATOD Sector eBulletin do not necessarily reflect the opinion of the Alcohol Tobacco and Other Drug Association ACT. Not all third-party events or information included in the eBulletin are endorsed by the ACT ATOD Sector or the Alcohol Tobacco and Other Drug Association ACT. No responsibility is accepted by the Alcohol Tobacco and Other Drug Association ACT or the editor for the accuracy of information contained in the eBulletin or the consequences of any person relying upon such information. To contact us please email ebulletin@atoda.org.au or call (02) 6255 4070.