The Andrews Labor Government today delivered on its election commitment to launch a 10 Year Mental Health Plan in its first year of office. Minister for Mental Health Martin Foley released the plan, which outlines the government’s goals. The plan will help ensure that future investment is made in a coordinated, integrated way so that Victorians can access mental health services in the right place and at the right time.
Parts of western NSW and the mid-North Coast are dispensing opioids at a rate 10 times higher than places such as Epping and Pennant Hills.
More coverage on the Australian Atlas of Healthcare Variation data (see yesterday's post: http://sco.lt/5q0KKf), highlighting the need for changes in prescribing practice and general approaches to pain management. Meanwhile, Australian production of pharmaceutical opioids is growing rapidly in response to global demand: http://sco.lt/5cAuht.
A surprising amount of media coverage has been dedicated to a niche sexual phenomenon known as “chemsex” in recent weeks. First identified by sexual health services around 2011, chemsex refers to gay male group sex parties fuelled by a mix of the recreational drugs GHB, mephadrone and crystal meth. It has been claimed that these parties, which can last longer than a day, have been linked to the spread of HIV infections and could lead to a public health crisis.
Hardline drug laws billed by the Andrews government as vital in the fight against ice could be made even harsher, under an amendment proposed by the Coalition.
Upping the political ante on methamphetamine policy. Substance specific legislation has electoral appeal, but becomes redundant when consumption patterns change. The article cite's VAADA's Sam Biondo in assessing such measures: 'There are other ways of dealing with this that would have far greater impacts'.
I am convinced my son Damien could have taken the right steps to overcome his problems and achieve a productive goal in life. He and many others never got the opportunity. Harm reduction stands beside all forms of drug treatment as a legitimate and much-needed element in drug policy.
Tony Trimingham makes the case for drugpolicy change. FYI, naloxone will now officially be available without prescription from Feb 1 2016. You can see the final decision by the Therapeutic Goods Administration here (on p13):
The idea of injecting drugs or meeting a drug addict is pretty confronting for many people. There's a sense that visitors to our service are at best unpredictable and chaotic, and at worst downright dangerous. Though Richard didn't seem at all phased.
Great piece by Marianne Jauncey (from our UnitingCare counsins at Sydney's Medically Supervised Injecting Centre) on the centre's work and how Richard Branson's visit helped (if only temporarily) erase the stigma experienced by one person who injects drugs.
CAPE York indigenous mayors are divided over how alcohol should be managed in their communities. While some, such as those from Pormpuraaw, Kowanyama, and Napranum, support an increase in limited alcohol sales, others like Aurukun, and Wujal Wujal want their plans to stay in place.
THE number of people diagnosed with HIV has reached a new high in Europe, underscoring the need for more and faster action, two European health agencies say in a report released ahead of World Aids Day, December 1.
Highlighting the importance of harm reduction measures in preventing the spread of HIV and other blood borne viruses.
Australia's mental health care system will be overhauled to provide more local services tailored to people's illnesses over the next three years, but may require significantly more funding to be completed.
Residents of Melbourne's wealthy eastern and bayside suburbs are among the highest users of colonoscopies in Australia while their poorer neighbours in Frankston top the state for using mental health plans for psychological care. A new atlas of health care has also revealed that children under the age of 17 in Sale have the highest rate of antidepressant drug use in Victoria, while people over 65 in Melbourne's wealthy inner south-eastern suburbs are Australia's greatest users of anti-psychotic medicines.
FORGET the Gold Coast and Bali, school leavers are ditching the traditional “schoolies” destinations and are instead looking for holidays based more around experiences.
More evidence that the kids are alright. While there are still clear problems with binge drinking amongst some young people (and older ones: http://sco.lt/5uya9p,http://sco.lt/93XDVp) overall consumption of alcohol is down and there is plenty of evidence to suggest that the current generation are living healthier lives than the preceding ones.
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