Focus on substance abuse disorders

By Ilia L Likou ,

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Participants at the training to address Substance Use Disorders (S.U.D) in their workplaces and communities.

Participants at the training to address Substance Use Disorders (S.U.D) in their workplaces and communities.

More than 20 participants from various government agencies and civil society organisations participated in the Universal Treatment Curricular Training for courses three and five of the Colombo Plan Drug Advisory Programme.

The training enables participants to better address Substance Use Disorders (S.U.D.) in their professions and communities.  

Held at the Ministry of Health (M.O.H.) yesterday, the eight day training is sponsored by the U.S. State Department’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs, in partnership with Samoa’s Ministry of the Prime Minister and Cabinet and the M.O.H.

Chargé d’Affaires for the United States in Samoa, Tony Greubel acknowledged Samoa’s support for the programme.

“I believe nearly all 26 trainees have returned for courses three and five, which will be focussing on common co-occurring mental and medical disorders as well as screening, assessing, and treatment planning for substance abusers,” Mr. Greubel said.

There are eight courses in total for the Colombo Plan Drug Advisory Programme Universal Treatment Curricular.  This training completed courses one and two in November last year.

“Our November, training coincided with the declaration by President Donald Trump of the United States opioid crisis as a national public health emergency.

“I am happy to announce that since then our Government has appointed key personnel and devoted considerable resources on reversing this epidemic.

“It is however an uphill battle. We are learning our own best practices every day and we are pleased to be able to work together with Samoa and share those best practices treatment methods with you,” Mr. Greubel said.

Some of the participants during the session.
Some of the participants during the session.

The trainers are Dr. Damber Kumar Nirola, Dr. Sivakumar Thurairajasingam and Susan Gitau.

The training continues. 

About the courses: 

Course 1: Physiology and Pharmacology for Addiction Professionals The course presents a comprehensive overview of addiction; provides an understanding of the physiology of addiction as a brain disease; and describes the pharmacology of psychoactive substances.

Course 2: Treatment for S.U.D. – The Continuum of Care for Addiction Professionals. 

The course provides the foundation for learning about S.U.D. treatment. It gives an overview of recovery and recovery management, stages of change, principles of effective treatment, components of treatment and evidence-based practices.

Course 3: Common Co-occurring Mental and Medical Disorders – An overview for Addiction Professionals, is a foundation course that provides an overview of the relationship of co-occurring mental and medical disorders and S.U.D. related treatments.

Course 5: Screening Intake, Assessment, Treatment Planning and Documentation for Addiction Professionals. This course is a skills-based course that teaches effective and integrated intake, screening, assessment, treatment planning and documentation procedures to addiction professionals.

© Samoa Observer 2016

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