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October 24, 2014

QUEENSLAND AOD CONVENTION - FINAL REPORT

The final report from the 2014 Queensland Alcohol and other Drug (AOD) Convention is now available.  The Convention was held in Brisbane on 23 July 2014 and brought together more than 100 service managers, policy officers and other key stakeholders from government and non-government alcohol and drug services across the state to discuss good practice in service delivery, with the aim of informing the development of a statewide framework for the AOD treatment sector.

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October 24, 2014

NEW HEADSPACE LOCATIONS ANNOUNCED

Coinciding with mental health week last week, the federal government have announced the locations for the new Headspace services for Queensland.  The new locations include Moreton Bay North (Caboolture), Gladstone, Brisbane east (Capalaba) and Bundaberg.  It is expected that these services will become operational over the next two years, bringing the total number of Headspace centres nationwide to 100.

For further information go to http://www.headspace.org.au/

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October 24, 2014

ALCOHOL AND THE DEVELOPING BRAIN

The Scottish Health Action on Alcohol Problems has published a report titled "Alcohol and the Developing Adolescent Brain: Evidence Review".  This report provides an excellent, concise update on the research into brain development in adolescence and the impacts of alcohol.  It considers to role of genetics, and the clinical implications of alcohol's effects on the brain, including the impacts on psychological and cognitive function.

Download "Alcohol and the Developing Brain: Evidence Review" here (4.6MB PDF)

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October 24, 2014

CLIMATE SCHOOLS: PSYCHOSTIMULANTS AND CANNABIS MODULES

Climate Schools is a school-based health education course developed by the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre (NDARC) at the University of New South Wales. The program has been evaluated and shown to reduce alcohol consumption, binge drinking, frequency of cannabis use while increasing knowledge about alcohol and cannabis and improving attitudes towards alcohol.  Recently, NDARC has launched a new module targeting psychostimulants and cannabis for young people in year 10.  The resources are free of charge, however you will need to register in order to access the materials.

Go to the Climate Schools Website.

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October 17, 2014

THE STORY OF ALCOHOL USE IN PREGNANCY

The Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education (FARE) has released a new training DVD titled "The story of alcohol use in pregnancy and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders."  The video was written and narrated by Professor Elizabeth Elliott from the University of Sydney and covers to risks of alcohol consumption and a comprehensive overview of FASD including the diagnosis and prevention.  Hard copies of the DVD can be purchased from the FARE online shop free of charge (excluding postage charges), or you can view it online.

Order a copy of  "The story of alcohol use in pregnancy and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders" or view online here.

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October 17, 2014

NCPIC WEBINAR: SYNTHETIC CANNABINOIDS

The National Cannabis Prevention and Intervention Centre (NCPIC) has announced a webinar on Monday 3rd of November 2014 on the topic of "Synthetic Cannabinoids" with Professor Steve Allsop, Director of the National Drug Research Institute (NDRI).  The presentation will provide an up to date overview of synthetic cannabinoids including prevalence, short and long term risks, consumer's views about synthetic cannabinoids and more.  If you are interested in attending you need to register in advance.

Register here for Professor Steve Allsop presenting on "Synthetic Cannabinoids"

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October 17, 2014

BEST PRACTICE OVERDOSE PREVENTION ON PRISON RELEASE

People who use opioids are known to be at high risk of fatal overdose in the period immediately after being released from prison.  This is due to the changes in tolerance that come with a period of abstinence that prison sometimes brings.  The Eurasian Harm Reduction Network has published a paper titled "Overdose Prevention Services Upon Release From Prison: Best practices from Scotland, Denmark, Italy and Spain."  A number of programs have been proposed to reduce the harm experienced by prisoners on release from prison, including pre-release counselling on overdose risks and prevention, training in first aid and overdose management, or the Scottish practice of providing Naloxone (an antidote to opioid overdose) on release.

Download "Overdose Prevention Services Upon release from Prison: Best Practices from Scotland, Denmark, Italy and Spain" (420KB PDF)

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October 10, 2014

QUEENSLAND MENTAL HEALTH DRUG AND ALCOHOL STRATEGIC PLAN LAUNCHED

The Queensland Mental Health Commission (QMHC) has launched the Queensland Mental Health, Drug and Alcohol Strategic Plan 2014 - 2019. The plan is the result of extensive consultation with a broad range of stakeholders including people with personal experience as well as their families and professionals who work with people experiencing mental health or alcohol and other drug problems. The plan is based on four pillars: better services, better awareness, prevention and early intervention, better engagement and collaboration, better transparency and accountability.  Associated with the plan is the "Stronger Community Mental Health and Wellbeing Grants Program", offering a total of $500 000 across three initiatives: Community Wellbeing and Enhancement Initiative, Community Awareness Initiative, and Capacity Building for Community Wellbeing.

More information on the Queensland Mental Health Drug and Alcohol Strategic Plan

More information on the Stronger Community Mental Health and Wellbeing Grants Program

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October 10, 2014

ALCOHOL AND LESBIAN WOMEN: INSIGHTS INTO CULTURE AND EMOTIONS

The University of Melbourne has published a research report titled "The ALICE Study: Alcohol and Lesbian / Bisexual Women: Insights into culture and emotions".  This research report aimed to explore the relationship between hazardous drinking, depression and anxiety in same-sex attracted women and to consider the factors that influence help-seeking.  The study involved a web-based survey, followed up with in-depth interviews with some of the participants.  The study found that 40.2% of the survey sample had experienced problematic alcohol use in the past twelve months.  The study also found high rates of lifetime depression (56.2%) and anxiety (46%), as well as suicidal thoughts (58.6%), self-harm (50.3%) and suicide attempts (23.7%).

Download "The ALICE Study: Alcohol and Lesbian / Bisexual Women: Insights into culture and emotions".

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October 10, 2014

STRENGTHS OF AUSTRALIAN ABORIGINAL CULTURAL PRACTICES IN CHILD REARING

The Australian Institute of Family Studies has published a document titled "Strengths of Australian Aboriginal cultural practices in family life and child rearing".  The paper considers how some of the characteristics of traditional Aboriginal Torres Strait Islander cultural practices contribute to positive family functioning and child development.  The paper brought together the views of Aboriginal families and incorporated existing evidence about effective child rearing practices.  The report found that "provided the necessary social conditions are in place, culture can be a protective force for children, families and communities."

Download "Strengths of Australian Aboriginal cultural practices in family life and child rearing" (236KB PDF)

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