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Policy positions

QNADA has an important role to play in advancing policy development relating to the AOD sector at both a national and in QLD. In order to accomplish this we are committed to seeking the views and input of our members by actively seeking their involvement in discussions as key issues arise. 

There are a range of policy positions under development and QNADA regularly contributes to public inquiries and the policy development of other organisations such as the Alcohol and Other Drug Council of Australia (ADCA). Full access to QNADA's recent submissions to discussion papers and inquiries is available to members only.

QNADA currently has policy positions in relation to:


Recovery and harm minimisation

The concept of recovery within an Australian context is not new, nor do we question its importance within the AOD treatment sector however, the current debate provides the opportunity to for us to consider current views and whether this new paradigm could enhance treatment and prevention approaches. We also acknowledge that a proportion of the AOD sector have expressed the concern that this ‘new recovery’ paradigm is a cosmetic shift in terminology, which provides cover for an abstinence only agenda. 

The re-conceptualisation of recovery oriented systems within the AOD sector is currently being debated following implementation of what is sometimes referred to as ‘new recovery’ in the United States of America and the United Kingdom.

In the Australian context, consideration of ‘new recovery’ should be weighed against the long established principle of harm minimisation (which we would argue is inclusive of recovery) and viewed against the backdrop of the significant reform of the broader health system and its implications for future models of care, key performance measures and funding arrangements (including significant austerity measures). 

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Dual diagnosis

The Alcohol and Drug Treatment Services National Minimum Data Set report for 2010-11 identified that 34% of clients who received treatment in Queensland during the period were referred by a mental health care service. Further, a 2005 study conducted by the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre (NDARC) found that 69% of people undergoing outpatient treatment for alcohol dependence had at least one cooccurring depressive or anxiety disorder (Burns, et al). 

This data reflects the on the ground experience of many QNADA members, who report that a significant proportion of clients accessing their service have a co-occurring mental health disorder. In addition, the 2007 National Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing found that of the 2.8 million respondents who reported that they drank every day, 21% had experienced a mental health disorder in the previous 12 months. Of those that drank once a month, 18% had experienced a mental health disorder in the previous 12 months. 

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 If you are interested in knowing more please give us a call on (07) 3023 5050.