AOD treatment services 2013-14

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Last week the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare released the Alcohol and Other Drug Treatment Services 2013-14 report.  The data for this report series comes from the National Minimum Data Set (NMDS).  NMDS is collected by Healthy Options programs as well as other organisations’ programs funded by the government.

Some of the main trends and findings in the data:

Client demographics

  • Nationally, there were 118,741 clients (1 in 200 of the population).  112,573 were attending the service for their own drug use; 7174 were significant others 
  • Two thirds of clients identify as male and 14% identify as Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander
  • Two thirds of significant others were female
  • The treatment population seems to be ageing, with a slight decrease in 20-29y/o and an increase in 40+y/o

Drugs of concern

  • The most common primary drug of concern is alcohol (40%), al though this has decreased from 2009-10 (48%)
  • There has been an increase in clients with amphetamines as the reported primary drug of concern up from 7% to 17%
  • There has been an increase in clients reporting inhaling and smoking as their method of use for amphetamines
  • 54% of clients have more than one drug of concern

Treatment

  • Over half of all agencies are located in major cities.  Only 7% are in remote or very remote areas
  • The most common stated intervention remains “counselling” 43%, followed by assessment and withdrawal management 
  • The median duration of treatment episodes was 3 weeks.  79% of episodes were closed within 3 months and 24% within one day
  • Clients whose principle drug of concern is amphetamines or heroin generally have longer treatment episodes   
  • 64% of client cessations were expected (e.g. treatment completion).  Unexpected cessations (e.g. non-compliance) accounted for 20% of cessations
  • Expected cessation was highest for ecstasy (87%) and lowest for buprenorphine (45%)
  • Unexpected cessation was highest for amphetamine (25%) and lowest for ecstasy (8%)

Full report available here:  http://tinyurl.com/o8eqqm6

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