Mental Health and Substance Use Webinars

image - Postgraduate TrainingLearn about the latest research into mental health and substance use disorders and discover the range of resources that are available to support the prevention and treatment of co-occuring disorders.

Presented by the Centre of Research Excellence in Mental Health and Substance Use, these webinars are for clinicians, allied health professionals, teachers, consumers, carers, and anyone with an interest in issues related to mental health and substance use.

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Our previous webinars are all available on demand through our Vimeo Channel.

For any other enquires about the webinar series, including suggestions for future topics or to nominate a potential guest speaker, please don't hesitate to get in contact with Dr Lexine Stapinski

National Comorbidity Guidelines: An evidence-based resource for drug and alcohol workers

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Thursday 27th April 2017, 11am

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The high prevalence of comorbidity means that alcohol and other drug (AOD) workers are frequently faced with the need to manage complex psychiatric symptoms that may interfere with their ability to treat clients’ AOD use. To assist AOD workers manage the significant challenge of treating clients with co-occurring mental health conditions, in 2014, the Australian Government Department of Health funded the development of the “Guidelines on the management of co-occurring alcohol and other drug and mental health conditions in alcohol and other drug treatment settings (2nd edition)”

The Guidelines aim to increase knowledge and awareness of comorbid mental health conditions in AOD treatment settings, improve confidence and skills of AOD workers, increase uptake of evidence-based care, and ultimately, improve outcomes for people with comorbid mental health conditions.

 

This webinar may be of particular interest to anyone working in an AOD setting in a clinical capacity, as well as university or TAFE students studying courses in mental health or AOD, but may also be of interest to those working in the mental health sector or the health sector more broadly.

 

This webinar will lead to:

·         Understanding of what is comorbidity, why it occurs, and why it is concerning;

·         Improved awareness of how to access a range of evidence-based options for identifying, managing and treating mental health symptoms within a holistic health care approach;

·         Understanding of involving multiple services and integrated care coordination;

·         Awareness of the online training program for AOD workers.

image - Mental Health and Substance Issue: Illuminating the issues and solutions

What can parents do to prevent teenage substance use?

image - Louise Dana Webinar
Thursday 25th May 2017, 11am AEST

image - What can parents do to prevent teenage substance use?

This webinar will provide attendees with an overview of the important role parents can play in preventing adolescent substance use, and introduce a new online parenting program.

 

This webinar will lead to:

·         Increased awareness of the patterns of drug and alcohol use among young people in Australia

·         Increased understanding of the role parents can play in influencing their adolescents’ substance use

·         Increased knowledge about effective approaches for preventing drug and alcohol use harms among young people.

 

image - What can parents do to prevent teenage substance use?

Personality-targeted interventions for prevention: the Preventure program

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Wednesday 22nd March 2017, 3:30pm AEST

image - Personality-targeted interventions for prevention: the Preventure program

This webinar will provide attendees with information about personality targeted drug prevention in schools and introduce attendees to the Preventure program.

 

This webinar will lead to:

·         Overview of the evidence-base behind brief, coping skills interventions for adolescents targeting personality risk factors

·         Increased understanding of personality risk markers for substance use and mental health problems in adolescence

·         Orientation to targeted school-based prevention including information about implementing the Preventure program in Australia.

 

Access on demand:

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Assessing with efficiency: Advances in the measurement of mental and substance use disorders

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Aug 18, 2016: 12pm AEDT

image - Assessing with efficiency: Advances in the measurement of mental and substance use disorders

Assessment in the field of mental health and substance use plays a critical role in clinical and research settings. Instruments that purport to measure mental and substance use disorders need to accurately represent how these disorders occur in nature (i.e. possess good validity), generate scores using as few items as possible (i.e. reduce respondent burden), and facilitate the communication of results in a standardised way (i.e. clinical utility). Recent advances in modern psychometrics, particularly item response theory and computerised testing have unlocked the possibility of creating tests that measure mental and substance use disorders in a more valid, highly efficient, and useful way. This webinar will summarise new approaches to the measurement of mental and substance use disorders, describe how tests can be developed and administered adaptively to maximise precision while minimising response burden, and discuss new ways that scores on different scales and screening instruments of mental and substance use disorders can be standardised using common metrics. It will be particularly relevant to researchers and service providers who regularly assess and monitor disorder severity using self-report scales. 

 

This webinar will lead to:

  1. Learn about theories of measurement that describe mental and substance use disorders as broad dimensions
  2. Learn about new computerised adaptive approaches that assess a comprehensive range of psychopathology in a highly efficient way
  3. Learn about the latest developments in standardising assessments in mental health and substance use

 

Access on demand:

 

The maturing adolescent brain: Implications for the prevention of drug and alcohol problems

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Thu, Sep 1, 2016 3:00 PM

image - Lesson planning with Positive Choices: How to engage your students with evidence-based drug education

This webinar will provide attendees with an overview of the major changes occurring in the adolescent brain and provide an overview of the implications these changes have for the prevention of drug and alcohol problems. We know that up until the age of 24 the adolescent brain is under heavy construction. Whilst these changes lead to a more efficient, fully developed “adult” brain, there’s also evidence to suggest that these relatively late maturation processes also mean that adolescence is a particularly critical period of vulnerability for addiction. In addition, we also know that alcohol and/or drug use can disrupt the normal development of the adolescent brain which has further implications for the misuse of alcohol and drugs, as well as the development of other mental illnesses. These neuroscientific insights into the adolescent brain suggest novel ways for preventing and treating problematic alcohol and/or drug use which will be discussed in detail. 

This webinar will lead to: 
1. Knowledge of the maturational processes occurring in the adolescent brain; 
2. An understanding of the effects that drug and alcohol use have on these normal developmental processes; and 
3. Knowledge of novel ways of treating and preventing problematic alcohol and/or drug use that are informed by these neuroscientific advances. 

 

Photo credit to Dierk Schaefer.

 

Access on demand:

 

 

 

 

Lesson planning with Positive Choices: How to engage your students with evidence-based drug education

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15/06/2016

image - Lesson planning with Positive Choices: How to engage your students with evidence-based drug education

This webinar is part of the new Positive Choices webinar series, developed by CREMS researchers specifically for parents, teachers, school leaders, and anyone working with young people.

This session will be particularly suitable for PDHPE teachers, but also relevant to principals, school counsellors or anyone working in a school community who would like information about online, evidence-based drug education and prevention. The webinar will introduce attendees to the Positive Choices drug education portal which houses a range of engaging learning resources that align with Australian Health and Physical Education curriculum requirements. The interactive session will provide an overview of what’s available in terms of school-based drug prevention, with a focus on evidence-based materials proven to improve student’s learning outcomes and wellbeing. Attendees will be shown how to use the portal to their advantage and will be provided with support in lesson planning and guidance about how to access and evaluate evidence-based resources that are engaging for young people. 


This webinar will lead to:

  1. Awareness of the patterns of drug and alcohol use among young people and effective school-based prevention approaches;
  2. Orientation to a range of resources with the potential to engage all students despite their individual learning styles and requirements;
  3. Understanding of how to use the portal to plan lessons online according to Australian curriculum requirements.

 

Access on Demand:

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Friendship networks in adolescence: How do they evolve and how do they influence mental health and substance use?

image - Slade 2016
May 26, 2016: 2pm AEDT

image - Friendship networks in adolescence: How do they evolve and how do they influence mental health and substance use?

Peers play an influential role in the health behaviour choices of adolescents. It has long been known that adolescents whose peers drink alcohol or use illicit drugs report higher levels of alcohol or illicit drug use themselves compared to adolescents whose peers do not drink or use illicit drugs. Yet how this relationship originates and how friendship and alcohol and drug use behaviours co-evolve over time is less well understood. It has also been suggested that mental health problems such as depression can spread through adolescent friendship networks. This webinar will summarise the latest research around the impact of friendship networks on the emotional health and drug and alcohol use of adolescents. It will be particularly relevant to those who work with adolescents such as teachers, parents, principals, counsellors and other adolescent-focussed professionals.

 

This webinar will lead to:

  1. Learn about theories that explain the influence of peers on adolescent mental health and substance use
  2. Learn about social network analysis as a methodology to understand the dynamic relationship between friendship and health over time
  3. Learn about the latest social network research in the area of adolescent mental health and substance use

 

Access on Demand:

 

The use of behavioural activation therapy for depression among substance users

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Friday 16th December 2016, 10am

image - Behavioural activation for the treatment of depression among substance users

This webinar will provide attendees with an overview of behavioural activation (BA) therapy for depression, and review the current evidence base for this approach. BA is designed to improve mood by increasing the client’s engagement in rewarding activities and reducing avoidance behaviours.  Importantly, it has the advantage of being more time efficient and less complex than other treatments for depression. The clinical application of BA and trouble-shooting techniques will be discussed, with a particular focus on substance users.

 

This webinar will lead to:

1. Knowledge of what behavioural activation therapy for depression is;

2. An understanding of the clinical application of behavioural activation therapy; and

3. An appreciation of how behavioural activation can be used in substance using populations.

 

Access on demand:

Watch the webinar

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How can teachers and parents respond to the challenge of 'Legal-Highs': Evidence-based prevention for new and emerging drugs

image - Katrina Webinar
4.00pm Wednesday, October 26 2016

image - Lesson planning with Positive Choices: How to engage your students with evidence-based drug education

This webinar will useful for teachers, parents and anyone else seeking information about the prevention of New Psychoactive Substances (NPS), also known as ‘legal highs’ or ‘synthetic drugs’. NPS are substances specifically designed to mimic the effects of existing illegal drugs, such as ecstasy and cannabis. These new drugs are especially risky as virtually nothing is known about their harms and effects, especially in the long term, and they are often marketed as ‘legal highs’ or ‘bath salts’ which can mislead young people into incorrectly thinking they are low-risk and safe to use. Therefore, this is a clear need to educate students about NPS. This webinar will provide attendees with an overview of some of the most common types of NPS and possible side effects, discuss the importance of dispelling common misconceptions about the legal status and risk profiles of NPS, and introduce an online ‘universal’ school-based program that has been specifically developed to prevent NPS use and related harms.


This webinar will lead to:

  1. Improved knowledge of what NPS are, common types, and rates of use;
  2. An understanding of the possible risks and consequences of NPS use for young people;
  3. Introduction to a new online prevention program for secondary school students specifically targeting ecstasy and NPS misuse.

 

Access on demand:

Watch the webinar

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Mental Health and Substance Use: Illuminating the issues and solutions

image - Maree Webinar
Thursday 9th February 2017, 11:00am

image - Mental Health and Substance Issue: Illuminating the issues and solutions

Mental and substance use disorders account for more years of life lost due to disability than any other disorders and are second only to cardiovascular disease and cancer as leading causes of disease burden. The top 10 causes of burden of disease in young Australians (15-24 years) are dominated by mental and substance use disorders. These disorders often occur together (comorbidity), affecting more than 300,000 Australians every year. Despite the significance of these conditions, the evidence surrounding the effective treatment of co-occurring disorders is weak, limited by traditional single disorder models and treatment silos. 

In 2012, the NHMRC, funded the Centre of Research Excellence in Mental Health and Substance Use (CREMS) (www.comorbidity.edu.au) to build research capacity in this area. This centre represents a world first, bringing together the largest concentration of nationally and internationally recognised comorbidity researchers. The centre brings together leading research academics from four Australian universities (UNSW; University of Newcastle; University of Sydney; and Macquarie University) and three international universities (University of Birmingham, UK; Northwestern University Medical School, USA; and the Medical University of  South Carolina, USA).

 

The CRE provides the opportunity for researchers currently working in diagnostic silos (addiction, depression, anxiety and psychosis) to share skills, innovations in treatment and research approaches, synergise data collection and establish collaborative data bases. Over the last 10 years Australia has been leading the way in developing new and effective treatments for comorbidity. We have made significant inroads in preventing harms. In this presentation I will share the results of this Australian research and efforts to disseminate the findings so that Australians can have access and benefit.

 

Access on demand:

Watch the webinar

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