The Older People's Drug and Alcohol Project aims to improve the responses of NSW Health drug and alcohol and mental health services to the needs of older people with substance use issues.

The project was undertaken in the context of a number of factors bringing older people’s drug and alcohol issues increasingly to attention:

  • The ageing of the Australian population. There are more older people in NSW than ever before, and this number and proportion is set to increase.
  • Generational change is being experienced with the ageing of the ‘baby boomers’. This generation has been exposed to more and different patterns of substance use throughout their lives, and early indications and predictions suggest the baby boomers are also the first generation to take their substance use through into later life.
  • Evidence suggests there is widespread under-recognition of drug and alcohol issues among older people.
  • Drug treatment populations are ageing, and experiencing ageing-related health issues for the first time.

The full project report is an in depth reference document, with detailed information and analysis relevant to this emerging area of policy. It includes current literature and policy, consultation findings, service utilisation data analysis, good practice service examples, and recommendations.

The summary report also includes project recommendations and is a more succinct resource for services.

The report in brief succinctly highlights the project’s key messages and is intended for a broader audience. This may include people from a range of sectors including aged care, aged health, and primary care; in addition to consumers, carers and the wider community. It may help to raise awareness of the issues, and to influence action and collaboration.​

Page Updated: Thursday 10 December 2015