The Australasian Professional Society on Alcohol and other Drugs

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New caterogy of membership retired members

New APSAD Membership Category from 1st July
A new membership category for retired members is being introduced in the new financial year providing long-term APSAD members the ideal way to stay in touch with former colleagues and keep up with the latest sector news. This membership category is available to existing members (>5 years continuous membership) who are no longer in paid employment due to retirement.

APSAD Retired Member

  • For long-term APSAD members who have retired / almost retired from practice, but wish to continue their association with APSAD.
  • For members aged 65 years or over, with at least 15 years’ continuous membership in APSAD.
  • Allows continuing active participation in committees if desired.
  • Annual subs take into account the members’ reduced income.
  • Same voting rights and access to services as for the Individual Member category
 

Membership fee changes notice

Membership Fee Changes from 1st July 2017

The APSAD Council after consultation with members at the AGM held on 1st Nov 2016 in Sydney has reviewed membership fees in parallel with budgeting for the 2017-2018 financial year, and from 1st July 2017 will increase Individual Membership dues from $200 to $210 per year from the 1st July 2017 with Concession dues increasing to $163.

Student Membership dues will increase to $105.

Small Institutional Membership dues will increase to $468 and Large Institutions to $914

The Council will continue to review these on an annual basis but aim to keep membership fees affordable and competitive against those of other professional societies.

Individual: $210  
Concession: $163 for those with a gross income < $50k
Student: $105  
Retired: $150  for long term APSAD members (>6yrs continuous membership) who have retired
Small Institution: $468  
Large Institution: $914  
 

APSAD Conference Abstract Mentor Program

Need Assistance with your Abstract for this year's conference? 

The APSAD Conference is running the Abstract Mentor Program with the assistance of our volunteer abstract mentors. The aim of the program is to provide an opportunity for First Peoples (Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander and Māori), Community Groups, Consumers, and Early Career Researchers to have their draft abstracts mentored by more experienced authors before submitting their abstract to the conference.

For further information visit the Mentor page on the conference website.

 

 

APSAD 2017 Conference

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Clinician's Corner | Drug and Alcohol Review

Clinician's Corner | By Associate Professor Frances Kay-Lambkin

Modifiable health risk behaviours and attitudes towards behaviour change of clients attending community-based substance use treatment services.

People diagnosed with substance use disorders face a wide range of challenges and stigmatisation related to their lifestyle, behaviours and effects of their condition throughout their lives.  In their forthcoming paper in Drug and Alcohol Review, available on Early View, Tremain et al. highlight how health risk behaviours independent of primary substance use, such as tobacco smoking, play a key role in the experience of harm, and contribute to the 23-year life expectancy gap between people diagnosed with substance use disorders and the general population. They then explore the leading health risk behaviours exhibited by a sample of people seeking treatment for substance use disorders.

Tremain et al. show that tobacco use, insufficient fruit and vegetable intake, and insufficient physical activity form a cluster of health risk behaviours that account for the greatest risk of chronic health diseases, both in the general population and in people seeking treatment for substance use disorders.  However, the authors found that these health risk behaviours are reported much more frequently by people diagnosed with substance use disorders, and within this population, young people (aged 18-34 years) are 4.4 times more likely to smoke tobacco than are people in older age groups.

The good news is that tobacco use, physical inactivity, and insufficient fruit and vegetable intake represent health behaviours that are amenable to change.  Further, Tremain et al. found that up to 61% of people engaged in substance use treatment services in New South Wales have already considered modifying these behaviours, and up to 97% thought it acceptable to be provided access to preventive interventions to reduce this health risk. Younger people in the Tremain et al. sample were more interested than other age groups in increasing their fruit and vegetable intake, indicating that a potential strategy for engaging this typically challenging age group in substance use treatment services may be to offer a broader “lifestyle-focussed” intervention.

While more research is needed in this area to determine the most effective strategies for supporting people diagnosed with substance use disorders to address tobacco use, fruit and vegetable intake, and physical activity, Tremain et al. provide a compelling argument for integrating lifestyle-focussed assessment and interventions (including the integration of the many apps and online programs currently available) into substance use treatment services in Australia.

A full copy of this paper is available online.

Tremain D, Freund M, Wolfenden L, Wye P, Bowman J, Dunlop A, Gillham K, Bartlem K, McElwaine K, Gow B, Wiggers J. Modifiable health risk behaviours and attitudes towards behaviour change of clients attending community-based substance use treatment services. Drug Alcohol Rev 2016; Available on Early View.

 

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Join in the conversation on the APSAD Early Career Networking group page on LinkedIn

This week's post to the ECR Networking Group conversation: 

How do you measure Research Impact? Posted by Dr Jason Ferris 

So, many of you may have heard that the wheels of 'impact' are changing again (see here for a refresh http://www.arc.gov.au/research-impact-principles-and-framework).

This issue has begun raising its head here at UQ as we prepare (in advance) for what might be the metrics behind 'measuring the societal benefits from research'. So, I thought it might be interesting what you have done to make 'impact' less about a journal (and its impact factor) and more about change.

I am mindful here of an exemplar by one of our own Caitlin Hughes - Which if I remember correctly lead to a change in 'legal thresholds' associated with serious drug offences. Correct me if I am wrong. Caitlin's research lead to a true change in policy - the gold standard of impact. 

So, what have you done, or what are you thinking of doing as the machinations around impact adjust again?

To join the conversation join us on LinkedIN 

APSAD ECR LinkedIn Group

 

Free AOD webinars for APSAD members

We are pleased to announce an exciting new partnership with the Insight Training and Education Unit in Queensland. APSAD members are now able to access FREE webinars of Insight’s Seminar Series Program.

Insight is a leading provider of alcohol and other drug training, education, information and advice for workers and services across Queensland.  They deliver a free seminar program each semester on a range of AOD related themes and topics. The seminars are delivered on the first Wednesday each month at 10am (AEST).

 
The first seminar for 2016 kicks off on Wednesday the 2nd March. This semester’s program draws together a diverse range of topics including pain management, Hep-C treatment, emotional regulation and motivational interviewing. This program also has a particular focus on methamphetamine as part of the Queensland Government’s response to ‘ice’.
 
To access full details please log in the Members' Area and go to the Workshop page on the APSAD website. 
 

Insight training calander Seminar 1-2016

 

Drug and Alcohol Review

Clinician's Corner - 

Synthetic cannabinoid withdrawal: A new demand on detoxification services


Between July 2013 and May 2014 the New Zealand Government legalised the sale of 40 synthetic cannabinoids via 156 licensed retail outlets. McFarlane and Christie report on 47 synthetic cannabis presentations at a medical detoxification service in Auckland during this period. This represented 4% of presentations (cf. 1.4% for natural cannabis).

Synthetic cannabis products are marketed as smoke-able herbal mixtures that contain inert vegetable matter infused with various psychoactive chemicals that mimic the effects of natural cannabis. McFarlane and Christie found that patients reporting smoking about five grams of synthetic cannabis per day, and smoked a variety of brands.

Around half of the patients (25 of 47) required medically supervised withdrawal. The most common withdrawal symptoms were agitation, irritability, anxiety and mood swings. Almost half reported nausea and vomiting.

Withdrawal symptoms were managed using diazepam initially (5–25 mg/day) and if this was unsuccessful, quetiapine (with doses ranging from 25 to 475 mg/day, for a mean of 8 days). Both patients and staff reported that quetiapine was more effective than diazepam at alleviating agitation, irritability and anxiety.

The observations of McFarlane and Christie suggest that synthetic cannabis use can bring about a withdrawal syndrome that may place additional demands on medically supervised withdrawal services. They point out that, at present, there is no clear evidence base for a pharmacological treatment of cannabis withdrawal.

To read more visit the full paper on the Wiley Online library.
A complimentary PDF of the article is available to APSAD members by emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

†Macfarlane V, Christie G. Synthetic cannabinoid withdrawal: A new demand on detoxification services. Drug and Alcohol Review 2015;34:147-53.  

Clinician Corner January 2015 Update

A recent study by Tung et al raises concerns about a local increase in the incidence of infective endocarditis among people who inject drugs. 

Tung et al. examined recorded cases of endocarditis from a regional hospital in Australia between 2003-2006 and 2009-2013. They found that although the overall incidence of infective endocarditis decreased in the population, the incidence of infective endocarditis related to injecting drug use increased from 0.5 to 0.8 cases per 100,000 person years.

This trend stands in contrast to overall declines in injecting drug use and related cases of infective endocarditis both in Australia and elsewhere. It may reflect a local increase in the injection of drugs or it may reflect an increase in the risk of infective endocarditis among people who inject drugs.

Factors that can increase the risk of infective endocarditis include the injection of talc and other insoluble agents that are contained in pharmaceutical preparations, vasospasm and skin lesions that can occur with stimulant use, and the use of saliva as a drug dilatant. These risk factors may have be exacerbated by a local shift away from injecting heroin to injecting other drugs, such as pharmaceutical opioids, performance enhancing drugs and methamphetamine.

This recent local trend highlights the need to be vigilant for signs of infective endocarditis among people who inject drugs, and to continue to educate people who inject drugs about ways to reduce the risks for infective endocarditis (e.g., using filters, alcohol swabs and sterile dilatants), even in the context of overall declines in injecting drug use and related cases of infective endocarditis.

To read more visit the full paper on Early View.
A complimentary PDF of the article is available to APSAD members by emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Tung MKY, Light M, Giri R, Lane S, Appelbe A, Harvey C, Athan E. Evolving epidemiology of injecting drug use-associated infective endocarditis: A regional centre experience. Drug and Alcohol Review 2014  

Keynote Presentation now on YouTube

Keynote presentations from the 2014 APSAD Conference are now available to view on our YouTube channel!

This is a great resource if you missed the opportunity of attending the conference.

Presentations include:

  • Sarah Larney - Harm production and harm reduction in prisons and post release.
  • Glenys Dore - Involuntary Drug and Alcohol Treatment New South Wales Style.
  • Simon Adamson -  Controlled Drinking the Science and the Art.
  • Judith Prochaska - Tobacco Use Treatment Updates for Behavioural Health Populations
  • Kathleen Brady - Stress and Addictions Neurobiologic Interface
Additional keynote presentations from the 2014 Conference will be added to our YouTube channel within the coming weeks.
Don't forgot APSAD Member's can log into the "Member's Area" on our website to view the presentation slides for concurrent sessions from previous APSAD Conferences.

 

Visit us on YouTube 

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