The Australian Defence Force (ADF) Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drugs Program (AToDP) was launched in May 2002 with the ADF Mental Health Strategy.
Placement in the Joint Health Command demonstrates recognition by the ADF that Alcohol and Other Drugs (AOD) use is a health issue, requiring a health response. That said there are also administrative and or punitive aspects that may arise from AOD use (i.e. reduction in rank, administrative transition or civilian legal charges) however these processes do not fall under the Health umbrella but rather under Personnel Policy Management.
Interventions are supported by best practices and researched evidence to ensure that we can be confident that there will be a 'real effect'. Evidence may come from randomised control trials, comparative studies, or case studies. The training provided by the AToDP is 'evidence-based' in that we present information and teach skills that have been found to be effective in achieving positive outcomes for AOD using clients.
AToDP offers comprehensive service delivery for all ADF members, which includes health promotion, early intervention, a range of treatment options, education and training, policy advice and development, and specialist AOD related advice.
ADF health and allied health professionals are best placed to provide frontline AOD interventions.
"Through workplace education and clinical intervention, to minimise problematic use of alcohol and other drugs amongst ADF personnel".
To play a role in ensuring that ADF policies relating to alcohol and other drug use are consistent with facilitating an environment in which problematic use of alcohol and other drugs is minimised;
To deliver a multi-level education and training program, as a component of the ADF Mental Health Strategy education and training program, that is provided at regular intervals, and that will ensure an adequate level of knowledge about alcohol and other drugs;
To positively influence attitudes and beliefs about alcohol and other drug use through the provision of accurate, credible and up-to-date information that is evidence-based;
To provide specialist advice to Commanders and health professionals on strategies to minimise the risks, to the individual and the community, associated with problematic alcohol and other drug use; and
To offer a range of accessible, evidence-based clinical interventions for ADF members using alcohol and other drugs in a problematic manner.
One of the key components of the ADF Mental Health Strategy is AToDP. This service is comprised of five different aspects of AToDP Training offered within the ADF.
This session is designed for all ADF members and provides a brief overview of Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drug (ATOD) related issues and policy.
This workshop is available to all members. It is an interactive workshop aimed at increasing members knowledge on the effects of alcohol and includes practical strategies for preventing associated risks.
Motivational Interviewing and Brief Intervention Program
This training is presented to health/allied health professionals in a one or two day workshop (depending on the level of skill of the participants), which provides information and guidance to allow the health provider to effectively use motivational interviewing as a tool in reducing or eliminating a members problematic use of alcohol or other drugs. It is aimed at health and allied health professionals.
This training is presented to health/allied health professionals and personnel who have a Command role within the ADF. It includes information on current issues, policies, pharmacology, health implications and clinical interventions. This package is aimed at training health, allied health professionals and Commanders to adequately treat problematic alcohol and other drug use in the ADF and is in line with current Best Practice and National Guidelines.
This training is presented to AToDP coordinators. It will be run annually in Canberra in conjunction with the Annual Mental Health Conference. It will update AToDP Coordinators on training issues, include some skills based training and provide an opportunity for regional issues to be raised and addressed.