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Session One: Substance use in the COVID-19 era: Research findings and clinical implications

image - NDARC Symposium Session One Presentation Holding Slide

The first session was focused on research findings and clinical implications of substance use during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The session included presentations on projects and studies driven by researchers at NDARC including Drug Trends, the Australians’ Drug Use: Adapting to Pandemic Threats’ (ADAPT) Study, Australian Parental Supply of Alcohol Longitudinal Study (APSALS), and the COVID-19 Health Care Workers (HEROES) Study.

There was also be a panel discussion with experts from wide ranging fields, including:

  • Jude Byrne, National Project Coordinator at the Australian Injecting and Illicit Drug Users League (AIVL)
  • Dr Fadil Pedic, Manager, Strategic Research and Evaluation, Alcohol and Other Drugs at NSW Health
  • Julie Babineau, CEO of Odyssey House
  • Adrian Dunlop, Director and Addiction Medicine Senior Staff Specialist with Hunter New England Local Health District, Drug & Alcohol

 

Program: 

Session Chair: Dr Amy Peacock

Title Presenter Presentation type

Welcome to Country

 

 

Introduction - Coping with change: Research during COVID-19

Professor Michael Farrell, Director of NDARC

Presentation

Trends in drug use, harms, and markets following the COVID-19 pandemic and associated restrictions: Findings from Drug Trends 2020. ABSTRACT

Dr Amy Peacock, Program Lead for Drug Trends at NDARC

Presentation

Drug use during COVID-19: Findings from the ADAPT study. ABSTRACT

Dr Rachel Sutherland, Research Fellow at NDARC

Presentation

Q&A    

Access to injecting equipment, and the impacts of COVID-19 restrictions. Watch here.

Ms Daisy Gibbs, PhD student at NDARC

Featured poster

Digital mental health service interventions in the community for people presenting to Emergency Department with suicidal behaviours during the COVID-19 pandemic. Watch here.

Dr Julia Lappin, Senior Lecturer at NDARC and psychiatrist

Featured poster

Recent trends in illicit drugs available on darknet marketplaces: Recent findings from the Drugs and New Technologies (DNeT) project. Watch here.

Mr Rajat Katyal, Research Assistant at NDARC

Featured poster

The impact of COVID-19 on self-reported mental health and treatment-seeking behaviour in a sample of young adults across Australia. Watch here.

Ms Emily Upton, Clinical Psychologist at The Kidman Centre, University of Technology Sydney

Featured poster

Learning from COVID-19: What are the effects of social isolation and disruptions to daily routines on alcohol purchasing and drinking? Watch here.

Dr Claire Wilkinson, Research Fellow at the Social Policy Research Centre, UNSW Sydney

Featured poster

5 minute break    

The impact of COVID-19 on consumption of alcohol among young people in Australia. ABSTRACT

Dr Philip Clare, Biostatistician at the Prevention Research Collaboration, University of Sydney

Presentation

The COVID-19 Health Care Workers (HEROES) Study: Australian Project Overview. ABSTRACT

Dr Sonja Memedovic, Research Fellow at NDARC

Presentation

PANEL DISCUSSION - Substance use in the COVID-19 era

Jude Byrne, National Project Coordinator at AIVL

 

Dr Fadil Pedic, Manager, Strategic Research and Evaluation, Alcohol and Other Drugs at NSW Health

 

Julie Babineau, CEO of Odyssey House

 

Adrian Dunlop, Director and Addiction Medicine Senior Staff Specialist with Hunter New England Local Health District, Drug & Alcohol

Panel discussion

Speakers: 

Panel members

Jude Byrne, AIVL

Jude has more than three decades experience working in peer-based drug user organisations, developing and implementing education campaigns and materials on hepatitis C (HCV) prevention testing and treatment for the injecting community.

She has extensive knowledge and experience in developing and implementing stigma and discrimination training for mainstream workers in various formats.

Jude has represented the HCV related needs of the injecting drug using community on local, national and international committees and works with researchers to help target and appropriately interact with community and disseminate research and policy documents.

 Research findings and clinical implications

Dr Fadil Pedić, Ministry of Health

Dr Fadil Pedic is Manager, Strategic Research & Evaluation, Centre for Alcohol and Other Drugs at the NSW Ministry of Health.

Fadil has worked at both Federal and NSW Health departments, founded two research agencies, and headed up the Government and Social Research divisions at two other agencies.  

His research is centred around behaviour change, social issues and health promotion on topics as varied as: drug use in prisons, children’s obesity, tobacco cessation, apprenticeship retention, and cyber-safety.

 Research findings and clinical implications

Julie Babineau, Odyssey House

Julie Babineau is the Chief Executive Officer of Odyssey House NSW, which is one of Australia’s largest specialist non-government rehabilitation organisations for people seeking to overcome dependence on alcohol and other drugs (AOD).

Julie has held leadership positions in the health and community services sectors in both Australia and Canada. She has a wealth of experience in operations, policy, planning and strategy as well as an extensive knowledge of the health needs of populations in need. For eight years Julie was the CEO of NSW Justice Health and Forensic Mental Health Network, which serves a diverse and vulnerable population.

 Research findings and clinical implications

Dr Adrian Dunlop

  • Director and Senior Staff Specialist for Hunter New England Local Health District Drug & Alcohol Clinical Services
  • Conjoint Professor, School of Medicine and Public Health, Faculty of Health, University of Newcastle
  • Honorary Medical Officer, Addiction Medicine, Justice Health and Forensic Mental Health Network, and
  • DASAS consultant, St Vincent’s LHN.

He was the Chief Addiction Medicine Specialist, Drug & Alcohol Branch, NSW Health (2014-2018).

He is a Foundation Fellow of the Australasian Chapter of Addiction Medicine (FAChAM) and current President-Elect of the Chapter Committee, and Past-President of the Australasian Professional Society on Alcohol and other Drugs (APSAD) and Fellow of the International Society for Addiction Medicine (FISAM).

 

 Research findings and clinical implications

Presenters

Dr Amy Peacock, NDARC

Dr Amy Peacock (BA Hons, PhD) is a Senior Research Fellow at the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre, University of New South Wales, and an Adjunct Researcher in the School of Medicine, University of Tasmania. Amy is currently the Program Lead for Drug Trends, comprising the Illicit Drug Reporting System (IDRS), Ecstasy and Related Drugs Reporting System (EDRS), National Illicit Drug Indicators Program (NIDIP) and the Drug and New Technologies (DNeT) projects. Amy also currently coordinates the Australian Parental Supply of Alcohol Longitudinal Study. Full profile.

 Research findings and clinical implications

Dr Rachel Sutherland, NDARC

Dr Rachel Sutherland is an experienced Research Fellow, with over 11 years of experience working in the AOD research sector. She has worked on a wide variety of research projects, most notably as the National Co-ordinator of the Illicit Drug Reporting System (IDRS) and the Ecstasy and related Drugs Reporting System (EDRS) (2011-2018). In 2018 Rachel completed her PhD, which examined the New Psychoactive Substances (NPS) market in Australia. Her research interests include illicit drug surveillance, NPS, cryptomarkets and harm reduction. Full profile.

 Research findings and clinical implications

Dr Philip Clare, Prevention Research Collaboration, University of Sydney

Dr Philip Clare has recently started his role as Biostatistician at the Prevention Research Collaboration, University of Sydney. Philip undertook his PhD at NDARC in biostatistics, with a focus on causal inference in longitudinal data. 

 Research findings and clinical implications

Dr Sonja Memedovic, NDARC

Dr Sonja Memedovic is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow within NDARC. She completed a Bachelor of Psychology (Honours) in 2008 and a PhD in Public Health and Community Medicine in 2018, at UNSW Sydney. She has worked in the substance use research field since 2009, with a predominant focus on the comorbidity of substance use and mental health disorders. She is experienced in the design, implementation and coordination of cross-sectional surveys, cohort studies, and RCTs.

Sonja’s key research interest is in improving understanding of the risk and protective factors that are common to substance use and mental health disorders, and the utility of these factors as transdiagnostic treatment targets. Full profile.

 Research findings and clinical implications

 

Professional development points: 

We have started a networking register to help you connect with others in the industry.

NETWORKING REGISTER

 

Posters: 

All posters this year can be accessed online and are accomnaied by a two minute presentation.

VIEW POSTERS HERE