Of Substance

July 2012 Vol. 10 No. 2

The July print issue of Of Substance is out now, and is full of the latest information about alcohol and other drug research and events.
Click on the PDF link above to access the full magazine.OS July_2012_LR_cv 1

Feature articles include:

  • Tackling the stigma: Drugs and discrimination?
  • Recovery: What does it mean in an Australian context?
  • Prescription opioids: A rising tide
  • AOD clinics: Stepping up to stop Hepatitis C
  • Barriers to success: What gets in the way of AOD project implementation?
  • Interview: Christopher Kennedy Lawford
  • Research digest, news and more.
Welcome to the July edition of Of Substance.

Some years ago, my son was hospitalised. Sharing the ward with my toddler was a very young baby. Staff identified her mother to other parents as a 'drug user'. While I admired their care and concern for her child, I was horrified by the way these otherwise compassionate
professionals openly and continually stigmatised this parent. When they searched her overnight bag I was uncomfortable about this action, and then disappointed that they did find stolen hospital equipment.

Ever since that experience, I have pondered the nature of discrimination. What creates it? How is it fuelled? Do negative expectations create the very behaviours that feed stigmatisation? What needs to happen for perceptions to change? While I still don't have all the answers to those questions, our article starting on page 10 does explore the topic and highlights some interesting initiatives that tackle the way society sees not only consumers of illicit drugs, but other marginalised groups.

In recent months, it seems 'recovery' has become the new buzzword of alcohol and other drug treatment, not just in Australia, but internationally, with the UK Government adopting a particularly strong policy on drug use and recovery. But it seems the word means different
things to different people. On page 14, we discuss some of those definitions and compare approaches with our colleagues in the mental health area.

This issue also explores the sharp increase in use of prescribed opioids, not just for illicit use, but also for legitimate therapeutic treatments. And for those working in clinical practice, we look at two important topics: how AOD clinics can better respond to clients who have
hepatitis C and at some of the barriers which prevent staff from implementing new programs and projects.

As always, I hope you will find this issue of Of Substance informative and thought provoking. Between issues, we like to keep readers informed electronically about news and opinions in the AOD sector. To receive our regular eBulletins, subscribe at www.ofsubstance.org.au 

Jenny Tinworth
Managing Editor

Photo credits for Shutterstock images in the July 2012 issue:

Cover: dundanim
p1: Hand on glass, motorolka
p3: Australian currency, Robyn Mackenzie
p4: Painkillers, docent; Alcohol advertising, RetroClipArt
p5: Heroin, Gaja; Alcohol, kaband; Cigarettes, Roman Sigaev
p6: Pregnant woman, Monkey Business Images
p7: Cannibas, eldirector77
p8: Man alone, luxorphoto; Background, Anelina
p12: Woman alone, Susan Law Cain
p14: Man on beach, Iakov Kalinin; Road sign, Andy Dean Photography; Background, Elenamiv
p16: Woman alone, Maria Sbytova; Background, Elenamiv
p20: Syringe, Artem Samokhvalov
p21: Elderly man, Yuri Arcurs
p23: Poppies, Jiri Vaclavek
p25: Two women, Alexander Raths
p26: Man alone, luxorphoto
p27: Woman, Monkey Business Images
p29: Doctors, Kiselev Andrey Valerevich.