AChAM Communiqué November 2019

Read highlights of the key issues discussed as part of the 04-2019 meeting held on 22 November 2019.


AChAM Committee Workplan 2019-20

The development of a Drug Policy is the AChAM Committee’s top priority for 2020. The AChAM Committee will develop the policy in collaboration with the Australasian Faculty of Public Health Medicine Policy & Advocacy Committee. The purpose of this policy will be to highlight the need for the Australian and New Zealand Governments to adopt a health-focused approach to substance use and to increase funding for responses that prioritise effective treatment, prevention services and supply reduction measures.

AChAM representation on College Council

AChAM Queensland Branch Chair, Associate Professor Kees Nydam, has been the AChAM Representative on the College Council since 2015. At its recent meeting, the AChAM Committee confirmed Associate Professor Nydam to continue in this role from 1 January 2020 onwards.

Policy and Advocacy

Recent advocacy

On Wednesday, 2 October 2019, AChAM President Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones, and immediate past-President Clinical Associate Professor Adrian Reynolds, represented the College at the public hearing for the Senate Inquiry into the Social Services Legislation Amendment (Drug Testing Trial) Bill 2019 (Clinical A/Prof Reynolds and Dr Lloyd-Jones’s appearances at the public hearing were featured in media outlets including The Guardian and ABC Radio National.

The AChAM Committee is undertaking advocacy on the roll out of real time prescription monitoring system (RTPM) for high risk medications. This advocacy focuses on highlighting the need for state and territory governments to implement RTPM alongside wider system planning and resourcing. This needs to include addressing the limited availability and access to specialist multidisciplinary pain clinics and addiction medicine services, and improving the funding model for primary care to ensure that GPs are supported to manage complex patients. The AChAM Committee has written to all state and territory Health Ministers regarding this issue. On Tuesday, 17 December, AChAM President Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones met with the Honourable Natasha Fyles, Minister for Health in the Northern Territory to discuss this matter.

For more information about our work, visit the AChAM Policy and Advocacy page or contact the RACP’s Policy and Advocacy Unit on


The Committee finalised the Addiction Medicine Evolve list of low value clinical practices and interventions at its recent meeting. The Committee has now circulated the list to relevant College bodies and Choosing Wisely for review and comment.


Chapter Narrative Statement

Following the rollout of the College value proposition Specialists.Together – Educate, Advocate, Innovate, individual Chapters, Faculties and the Paediatrics & Child Health Division developed their own value propositions and narrative statements. The aim of the statements and associated advocacy material is to support the Chapter to have a consistent and simple way to talk about its value to key audiences. The AChAM has now finalised its statement and associated advocacy toolkit materials, which will soon be made available to all AChAM members through MyRACP.

The next AChAM Committee meeting will be via videoconference on Thursday, 26 March 2020.
Dr Martyn-Lloyd-Jones, President
Australasian Chapter of Addiction Medicine
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