Chapter of Addiction Medicine

What is Addiction Medicine?

Addiction Medicine is the comprehensive care of people with substance use and addiction disorders, including drug and alcohol addiction, and pharmaceutical dependency.  The Australasian Chapter of Addiction Medicine (AChAM) plays an important role in shaping public policy in the areas of health protection, prevention and health promotion for improved public and population health outcomes. 

What is the College doing?

The AChAM is contributing to a number of RACP policy and advocacy projects, and the EVOLVE initiative, to create a list of the top 5 ‘low value' practices used in commonly encountered clinical scenarios within addiction medicine.  AChAM has also informed the RACP’s response on issues including: 
  • opioid prescribing and the use of opioids in managing chronic non-cancer pain
  • the harms of alcohol
  • tobacco
  • the regulatory environment for e-cigarettes

Drug and alcohol welfare measures

The AChAM has led the health and medical sector in calls to the Australian Government not to proceed with a drug testing trial of welfare recipients, on the grounds that the proposal is not evidence-based and would be potentially harmful. The leadership of the AChAM on this issue has brought the lack of funding for drug and alcohol treatment services to the forefront of political debate.

This work included providing a written submission to a Senate inquiry into the legislation, giving evidence at a public hearing, parliamentary engagement and significant media coverage.

On 7 December 2017, the Australian Senate voted to oppose the drug testing trial – a great advocacy outcome for the AChAM and the RACP.

Submission to Inquiry into the Social Services Legislation Amendment (Drug Testing Trial) Bill 2019 (PDF 188KB)

Inquiry into the Social Services Legislation Amendment (Drug Testing Trial) Bill 2018

RACP submission Senate Inquiry Welfare Reform Bill

Opinion Piece: Humiliating Australians on welfare is not the answer

RACP media release: Evidence shows that drug testing pilot won’t work

RACP media release: Outcome of Senate vote

Recent Submissions

AChAM submission to the Australian Department of Health consultation on the Post-market Review of Opiate Dependence Treatment Program Medicines

RACP response to Department of Health survey draft Terms of Reference on the Post-market review of the medicines listed on the PBS Opiate Dependence Treatment Program (PDF 21KB) 

RACP submission to NSW Government’s Regulation to support Real Time Prescription Monitoring consultation paper (PDF 285KB)

RACP Submission to the Special Commission of the Inquiry into the Drug 'Ice'

RTPM Controlled Substances Amendment Bill 2020 (PDF 195KB)

RACP Submission to the Consultation on the draft National Treatment Framework – Version 3   

RACP Submission to the consultation on NSW music festival safety guidelines

RACP Submission to the South Australian Department of Health and Ageing's consultation paper titles Considering a model for mandatory assessment and/or treatment of those at extreme and immediate risk, based on the Victorian Severe Substance Dependency Treatment Act 2010 (PDF 106KB)

RACP Submission to the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA). Prescription strong (Schedule 8) opioid use and misuse in Australia - options for a regulatory response (PDF 137KB)

RACP Submission to the NSW Parliamentary Inquiry into the provision of drug rehabilitation services in regional, rural and remote New South Wales (PDF 144KB)

RACP Submission - Victorian Parliament Inquiry into the Drugs, Poisons and Controlled Substances Amendment (Pilot Medically Supervised Injecting Centre) Bill 2017 (PDF 82KB)

RACP Submission - Victorian Parliament Law Reform, Road and Community Safety Committee Inquiry into Drug Law Reform (PDF 116KB)

RACP Submission - NSW Health 2016 Statutory Review of Part 2A of the Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985 (PDF 80KB)

RACP submission letter: NSW Draft Smoke-free Environment Regulation 2016 (PDF 131KB)

RACP submission to the ACT Government’s community consultation on smoke-free playgrounds (PDF 107KB)

RACP submission to the Victorian to the Tobacco Amendment Bill 2016 (PDF 110KB)

How can I contribute my expertise?

RACP Trainees and Physicians need to see Represent Your Profession or email or use the online contact form.

How do I contact AChAM?

Email or use the online contact form

Where can I read more?

Read published RACP policies, position statements or submissions by searching the Policy and Advocacy Library or view the latest Policy Submissions.
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