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Support for people living with substance use and mental health concerns

As many as 70% of referred people engage with the service

A program funded by Adelaide PHN is helping adults who are living with both mental health and substance use concerns. The free, confidential and voluntary Partners Toward Wellbeing (PTW) program is being delivered by Mission Australia in partnership with Sonder.

Clients can receive up to 12 sessions with an Alcohol and Other Drugs (AOD) Practitioner from Mission Australia or a Comorbidity Clinician from Sonder – or a combination of both. This is complemented by peer support from either agency, depending on the client’s need.

The program prioritises older Australians, First Nations peoples and people from Culturally and Linguistically Diverse communities and the PTW team is fully trained in the use of the National Comorbidity Guidelines.

PTW is proving successful for a number of reasons, one of which is the value placed on lived experience. A client’s first contact is with a Peer Worker who works with them to help identify their issues. This ensures the first contact is free of stigma or judgement, resulting in as many as 70% of referred people engaging with the service.

The program also employs a First Nations AOD worker who engages with people seeking treatment from a mainstream AOD service.

PTW uses a collaborative approach to case management with a focus on ensuring the best outcomes for the client while drawing on the collective skills, wisdom and lived experience of the assigned worker(s) as well as the broader team.

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