Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, 2016
Key findings in 2014–15:
- A total of 843 publicly-funded alcohol and other drug treatment agencies provided services to clients seeking treatment and support for alcohol and other drug problems, an increase of 27% over the 5-year period to 2014–15.
- Around 115,000 clients received just over 170,000 treatment episodes from alcohol and other drug treatment agencies.
- 2 in 3 clients were male (67%), just over half were aged 20–39 (54%), and 1 in 7 clients were Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people (15%).
- The alcohol and other drug client group is an ageing cohort, with a median age of 33 years in 2014–15, up from 31 in 2005–06. Since 2005–06 there has been a decline in the proportion of 20–29 year olds being treated (from 33% to 27% of treatment episodes), while the proportion of those aged 40 and over rose from 26% to 32%.
- The proportion of episodes where clients were receiving treatment for amphetamines (20%) has continued to increase over the last 10 years, from 11% of treatment episodes in 2005–06, and 17% in 2013–14.
- There was an increase in the number of closed treatment episodes between 2005–06 and 2014–15, from 151,362 to 170,367—a 13% increase over the 10-year period.
- In 2014–15, the top 4 principal drugs that led clients to seek treatment were alcohol (38% of treatment episodes), cannabis (24%), amphetamines (20%) and heroin (6%).
- Treatment for the use of amphetamines increased over the 5 years to 2014–15 (from 9% of closed treatment episodes to 20%).
- Over the 10 years since 2005–06, treatment types received by clients have not changed substantially, with counselling, assessment only and withdrawal management being the most common types of treatment—this was the same for both Indigenous and non-Indigenous clients.
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