New of­fi­cer to aid drug treat­ment

Pilbara News - - News - Ali­cia Perera

The Pil­bara’s only res­i­den­tial re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion pro­gram for drug and al­co­hol treat­ment has been given a boost through fund­ing for a new po­si­tion to sup­port peo­ple through the treat­ment process.

Yaan­d­ina Fam­ily Cen­tre’s 20-bed Turner River Re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion Cen­tre, 20km south of South Hed­land, has been awarded about $180,000 in gov­ern­ment fund­ing for the cre­ation of an Abo­rig­i­nal li­ai­son and ad­vo­cacy of­fi­cer po­si­tion who can help peo­ple com­plete the de­tox pro­gram and as­sist them in com­bat­ing ad­dic­tion.

The of­fi­cer will be ap­pointed for an 18-month trial ba­sis and may be­come per­ma­nent after that time.

Yaan­d­ina chief ex­ec­u­tive Nick Fur­ni­vall said the cen­tre had re­quested the new po­si­tion to help sup­port clients through­out the re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion process.

“The po­si­tion keeps the clients in the loop with both pre-and post­drug and al­co­hol care,” he said.

“When peo­ple come out of Turner River, they are in them­selves ready to go back out into the com­mu­nity.

“The ALO sim­ply makes sure that per­son is sup­ported by whichever drug and al­co­hol agen­cies are around.”

The po­si­tion is be­ing funded as part of the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment’s Na­tional Ice Ac­tion Strat­egy, part of which in­cludes $20 mil­lion over three years to fund new WA al­co­hol and drug treat­ment ser­vices, and is be­ing de­liv­ered by the Coun­try WA Pri­mary Health Net­work.

Coun­try WA PHN gen­eral man­ager Linda Richard­son said she en­vi­sioned the new po­si­tion would build on the good foun­da­tion of the ex­ist­ing pro­gram and im­prove ac­cess for Abo­rig­i­nal peo­ple.

“(Yaan­d­ina’s) drug and al­co­hol sup­port pro­gram ad­dresses ad­dic­tive be­hav­iours, re­duc­ing harm to in­di­vid­u­als and fam­i­lies and as­sists peo­ple to de­velop healthy life­style skills,” she said.

Yaan­d­ina is funded through the In­dige­nous Ad­vance­ment Strat­egy and has a pri­mary fo­cus on im­prov­ing out­comes for Abo­rig­i­nal peo­ple.

The fund­ing has been as­signed from Jan­uary 1, 2017, to June 30, 2018.

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