The Australasian Professional Society on Alcohol and other Drugs

News & Media

Practitioner views on assessment of drug and alcohol problems (online survey)

 
 The UQ Centre for Youth Substance Abuse Research (CYSAR) is conducting a short survey on Australian health practitioner perspectives on using standardised assessments for drug and alcohol problems, funded by the Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF). The survey will take only 10-15 mins for the chance to win a $200 Coles-Myer gift card.
 
Any health professional who has worked with individuals experiencing a drug or alcohol problem is eligible (even comorbid AOD problems). 
 
Further details of the study can be found at the link: https://exp.psy.uq.edu.au/practitioner/ 
 

Media Release - Professionals strongly oppose Welfare Reform Bill & drug testing trial

Professionals from the Australasian Professional Society on Alcohol and other Drugs (APSAD) strongly oppose the Federal Government’s Welfare Reform Bill and drug testing ‘trial’ for welfare recipients.

APSAD continues to strongly oppose the Federal Government’s Welfare Reform Bill and its planned drug testing ‘trial’ for welfare recipients.

President of APSAD Dr Tony Gill, said the ‘trial’ will harm the health of people who use drugs, and waste a great deal of money that could be far better spent on providing voluntary treatment.

“APSAD is the Asia Pacific's leading multidisciplinary organisation for professionals involved in the alcohol and other drug field. APSAD membership includes researchers, counsellors, psychologists, and doctors such as addiction medicine specialists, general practitioners, and psychiatrists,” said Dr Gill, who is APSAD President and has worked as a medical specialist in the alcohol and other drugs field for more than 25 years.

“As professionals who work with people with drug and alcohol-related problems, we are very clear that the drug testing ‘trial’ as currently planned is unworkable for numerous reasons.

  • The ‘trial’ is not supported by any scientific evidence, medical groups have not been consulted and have had no input into it, and it is widely opposed by relevant experts
  • Similar attempts have been found to be costly and/or unworkable in New Zealand, Canada, the USA and UK
  • Drug testing does not tell you in someone has a problem
  • By far the biggestharms from drug and alcohol use in Australia result from alchohol use, and it is not included
  • The ‘trial’ may result in people with significant health problems having reduced, or  in some cases no, access to income
  • The ‘trial’ will further widen the Gap of Health status for First Nations peoples
  • A ‘trial’ cannot be relevant to many parts of the nation as there are many areas, including rural and regional ones, with very few drug and alcohol services as well as  poor access to pathology services
  • Already there are not enough drug and alcohol services available in Australia to provide access to treatment for people who need them. Many people who currently want treatment face long waiting periods. This will be made worse by automatically referring in a whole lot of people who don’t need specialist treatment under the proposed ‘trial’
  • Some APSAD members believe the trial is unethical and may decide to refuse to participate.

“Problematic drug use should be treated as a health problem, not a reason for increasing stigma and reducing access to welfare,” Dr Gill said.

 “The causes of drug problems in individuals are complex. Effective treatment for people with drug problems and support for their families is the right approach, not increasing stigma towards people who use drugs. 

“The Federal Government’s planned ‘trial’ of drug testing for people receiving welfare payments is a bad idea.

“It makes no sense to spend so much money unnecessarily on something that doesn’t work, when we know that treatment services are already chronically underfunded.

“This scheme would either rely on cheap tests that are inaccurate, in order to save money, or spend exorbitant costs on high quality yet still inconclusive testing.

“Furthermore, there is no evidence that it will actually assist people to get back to work,” he said.

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For comment or further information, contact Dr Tony Gill through APSAD 02 9252 2281.

Download the media release.

 

APSAD and Drug and Alcohol Review will be launching a new award at the APSAD Conference

APSAD and Drug and Alcohol Review (the Society’s official journal) will be launching a new award at the APSAD Conference Early Career Researchers (ECR)  Networking Breakfast on Tuesday 6 November. 


The award will be for the most cited paper published in 2015-16 by an ECR in Drug and Alcohol Review. The award is recognition only, providing a measure of esteem that can be used for ECR career development - a great addition to your CV!


Eligible papers will be those that are:

  • Published in an issue of Drug and Alcohol Review in 2015-2016 (Volumes 34 & 35);
  • First-authored by a current APSAD member, who met APSAD ECR criteria at the time of
  • publication*;
  • An original report, brief report, or comprehensive review (i.e. not letters/commentaries).

*Not more than 5 years post last postgraduate degree and have been working in the field as a researcher or scientist for less than 10 years, career disruptions excluded.

The winner of this award will be determined through the APSAD membership database, so to be in the running, make sure your APSAD membership is current. If you are unsure of your membership status please contact the This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

If you think you might be eligible for this award but are not a member, it’s not too late to join!

You can apply for membership here – please be sure to list the year your PhD was completed (conferred) on the application form. If you supervise or work with ECRs, please share these details with them so they can make sure their APSAD Membership is current. For further information on APSAD Membership and the ECR Group.  

 

Nicotine Addiction & Smoking Cessation Training Course

Gain in-depth knowledge and skills in nicotine addiction and smoking cessation to work in primary and allied healthcare as a tobacco treatment and smoking cessation specialist.

Hosted by A/Prof Renee Bittoun Tobacco Treatment Specialist, Adjunct Associate Professor Medical School, University of Notre Dame Australia, along with other experts in the field of smoking cessation. A/Prof Bittoun has been teaching this coursefor over 15 years, regularly updating the content and has many years of experience in clinical practice and professional training regarding smoking cessation.

Topics: Causes, consequences, treatment and research of smoking cessation, nicotine addiction and appropriate evidence based smoking cessation techniques in practical application. Our aim is to improve the implementation and evaluation of programs in smoking cessation. This three day course includes a USB stick with course materials and a certificate of attendance is awarded on completion.

 Date:  23 - 25 October 2018
 Time:  9am – 5pm
 Location: Woolcock Institute of Medical Research,
Level 5 431 Glebe Point Rd,
Glebe, NSW 2037
Cost: $1,870 incl GST
Catering provided


REGISTER ONLINE: https://smokingcessationoct2018.eventbrite.com.au

Alternatively DOWNLOAD and complete the registration form.

 

New Thoughts of Substance Podcast from the ECR sub-committee

On this episode of Thoughts Of Substance, Dr Christina Marel is talking to the 2007 winner of the APSAD Early Career Award, Associate Professor Katherine Mills, about some of her career successes and challenges. Has it all been smooth sailing? What were some of the biggest obstacles she’s encountered along the way to becoming an independent researcher? 

https://soundcloud.com/user-960069631-756237016/3-thoughts-of-substance

 

Thought of Substance podcast slide

 

ECU Study on Microdosing Psychedlics

Have you ever with

Microdosing

What we are trying to discover: The purpose of the study is to explore wellbeing, stress, anxiety and depressive symptoms in people who microdose compared with a group practising an activity that has similar aims to microdosing.

Why? While there is growing research demonstrating the therapeutic potential of psychedelic drugs, there is limited research on microdosing. Anecdotal reports of microdosing are consistent with research on the therapeutic effects of psychedelics in larger doses. Microdosing might provide the beneficial therapeutic effects associated with psychedelics without the intense experience of a full dose.

https://ecuau.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_9pK4Rmqc624XWcJ

 

Australian Association of Smoking Cessation Professionals will be merging with our society

 

APSAD is pleased to announce that the Australian Association of Smoking Cessation Professionals will be merging with our Society. As APSAD members, they will form a Special Interest Group - the Australasian Smoking Cessation Professionals Special Interest Group (ASCP-SIG).

The amalgamation was flagged at last year’s APSAD Annual General Meeting. It is the result of careful consideration of the benefits and challenges involved. The amalgamation is a new exciting chapter in the Society’s history.

There will be no change to membership of APSAD and no change to the membership fee. There will be some exciting additions to benefit members including:

  • Access to the online Journal of Smoking Cessation in addition to the Drug and Alcohol Review
  • Annual Smoking Cessation Update Day to be held on the Sunday at the APSAD Conference
  • Ability to join the ASCP Special Interest Group
  • Monthly webinars - kindly coordinated by Kevin Price from the Seventh Day Adventist Group
  • Database of practising professional members as a referral source
  • Find a Tobacco Specialist – Finder on the APSAD website
  • ASCP Listserv

The APSAD website is currently being updated to include the ASCP-SIG, Tobacco Specialist Finder and the membership application form. Those interested can apply to join the ASCP Special Interest Group at the same time as applying to join APSAD. Current APSAD members who wish to join the ASCP-SIG will need to complete a new membership application form. This new form will help us update your details in our database as well as collecting the new information for the ASCP-SIG. 

The ASCP-SIG will require members to be accredited as Tobacco Treatment Specialists and will also facilitate accreditation as Tobacco Treatment Specialists for those interested in becoming members of the Special Interest Group.

APSAD’s updated website should be ready before the end of June, we’ll send another email to members when it’s ready.

APSAD and ASCP will be holding a teleconference on Tuesday 12 June at 1200 (AEST) hosted by Lynda Berends (Immediate Past President APSAD) and Renee Bittoun (Past President AASCP), to provide members with more information and to answer any questions you may have. Details to dial in are provided below. We have put together some slides for the teleconference and to provide further information for those unable to attend.

The slides are available for you to download.

Teleconference details:

Toll-Free Numbers:

Australia:       1 800 064 762

New Zealand:  0 508 31 0169

Toll Numbers:

Australia:        +61 2 8090 8323

New Zealand:  +64 9 973 7382

Conference Room Number: 528-225-008

If you are unable to join the teleconference but have questions you can contact Liz Baxter at the APSAD office on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Please pass on this information to your networks.

 

Welcome ASCP Webinar Page 01

 

The Network of Alcohol and other Drugs Agencies (NADA) - update

 

NADA CONFERENCE - Updated program outline
An updated program is now live on the conference website, and attached for your convenience. It’s time to start planning: 
your day will be filled with keynotes, panel discussions, exciting presentations and workshops.

Conference streams include: withdrawal management, integrated approaches to treatment, client outcomes and more.

Learn from our keynotes, including:

  • the impact of decriminalisation on integrated responses and delivery of treatment services in Portugal
  • why the consumers’ voice should be central to AOD treatment
  • what responding to family and domestic violence might mean in AOD service provision context
  • current evidence base and innovations for primary and comorbid substance use disorders in young people.

Join the panel discussion on ‘Access and equity in AOD treatment’ and a Q&A with Minister Brad Hazzard. 

Register now for NADA Conference 2018: registrations close 25 May.

Pre-conference workshops
Two one-day pre-conference workshops have been announced, free for NADA members and conference delegates:
Magnifying motivational interviewing workshop’ and ‘Well beings: A workshop on workplace wellbeing for managers and supervisors.’

 

The College on Problems of Drug Dependence (CPDD) Meeting

CPDD 80th Annual Scientific Meeting

9 - 14 June 2018 Hilton San Diego Bayfront, San Diego CA USA 

We will have a number of symposia and workshops, some in conjunction with the International Narcotics Research Conference (INRC), which overlaps with CPDD for a few days, and others that also include the Research Society on Alcoholism (RSA). If you are attending the INRC or RSA conference after the CPDD conference you can qualify for a 20% discount.

Early Bird Registration Deadline:  April 16, 2018; Standard Rates will apply on and after April 17, 2018

To register and for further information on the speakers and program click here to view. 

 

cpdd

 

Insight Seminars | free for APSAD Members

To download semester one calendar click here

 

Insight Seminar Calendar 2018 Semester 1

 

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