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Victoria's Alcohol Action Plan (VAAP)

'Restoring the balance' - Victorian Alcohol Action Plan 2008-2013 (VAAP) outlines a wide range of initiatives to prevent and reduce the harms associated with alcohol misuse in Victoria.  The plan incorporates immediate actions and establishes a long term framework for change. The framework aims at directing action across the government, stakeholders and the wider community.

Oulined below is information about initiatives undertaken by the Turning Point Alcohol & Drug Centre and General Practice Victoria, as part of VAAP, to assist with the treatment of alcohol misuse in the community.




Specialist Alcohol Consultancy Service (Turning Point Alcohol & Drug Centre)

The Specialist Alcohol Consultancy Service (SACS) provides Victorian GPs with access to specialist support for clients misusing alcohol. This service is one of a range of Turning Point initiatives funded through the state government's Victoria's Alcohol Action Plan (VAAP).

The SACS clinic provides:

  • treatment for alcohol withdrawal and dependence
  • secondary consultation for assessment
  • treatment advice

Referring GPs are supported by specialists trained in treating addiction and alcohol related problems. The specialists provide:

  • management of alcohol withdrawal
  • treatment and pharmacotherapy for alcohol dependence
  • secondary consultation for advice and management planning
  • shared care of complex patients

The addiction medicine specialists can support GPs to intervene early, prevent escalation of health problems and manage existing health problems more effectively.

Referrals

Access to the SACS clinic is by referral from a general practitioner. GPs making contact with the clinic are directed to use the SACS referral form (download) to assist and inform the referring and treating doctors. The Turning Point clinic can be contacted on (03) 8413 8444



Alcohol Education Program (General Practice Victoria) 

As part of 'Restoring the balance' (VAAP) campaign, the Victorian government sought assistance from the Victorian Divisions Network to achieve an increase in General Practice provision of brief interventions, treatment and appropriate referral to address risky and harmful alcohol use. 

The Mental Health and the Drugs Division of the Department of Health have provided funding to General Practice Victoria (GPV) for delivery of education and resources to the General Practitioner and Practice Nurse workforce across Victoria.

GPV has worked closely with Dr Paul Grinzi from the RACGP Victorian Faculty Drug and Alcohol Committee to develop a Continuing Professional Development module. This module has been successfully tested with a group of GP advisors. An important component of the module includes promoting secondary consultation for GP support and information about patient services. GPV works closely with Turning Point and regional alcohol and other drug agencies to foster these networks for the general practice.

An alcohol education program called the 'Management of Alcohol in General Practice', has been developed and will be delivered locally through divisions of general practice across Victoria. A group of expert speakers who have a special interest in the management of alcohol and other drug issues in general practice are available, and have commenced this rollout.

If you are a GP and want information about the local sessions please visit the GPV website.