PDF version: ANACAD Summary of Activities 2016-17 (PDF 226 KB)
In late 2014, the then Prime Minister approved a series of reforms to the governance,
scope and structure of the Australian Government’s national alcohol and other drug
(AOD) advisory body through the establishment of the Australian National Advisory
Council on Alcohol and Drugs (ANACAD).
The ANACAD membership is made up of individual experts with a range of expertise
and backgrounds. The full membership list and Terms of Reference is available on the
This summary provides an overview of the activities undertaken by the ANACAD
over the period of 01 July 2016 to 30 June 2017.
The role of ANACAD
The ANACAD supports the Australian Government by providing confidential, strategic, evidence-based advice on:
- AOD trends;
- Identified priorities of national importance;
- Key international issues relevant to the priorities; and
- AOD issues among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander populations.
Through the development and approval of the strategically driven annual workplan, the Government identified a number of priority areas for advice and consideration by the ANACAD including:
- Illicit drug use and harms in Australia;
- Harm among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander populations;
- Alcohol related harms;
- Emerging trends and evidence; and
- Gaps in current approaches and evidence.
ANACAD reports to the Government through the portfolio Minister with policy responsibility for AOD issues.
Key activities to date
ANACAD has engaged with a number of Government Ministers, both in formal council meetings and out of session. These include Ministers from a range of portfolios with AOD linkages including Health, Indigenous Affairs; Justice, Communications and Education.
ANACAD has engaged in the following activities:
- Illicit drug use and harms in Australia
- Throughout 2016-17 ANACAD contributed to monitoring the
implementation of the measures announced by the government in
response to the final report of the National Ice Taskforce in order to
provide independent advice to the Minister.
- ANACAD maintained their commitment to monitoring the
implementation of the National Hotline, and also maintained their
commitment to monitoring the implementation of commissioning of
AOD treatment services by PHNs.
- Harm among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Populations:
- ANACAD’s Indigenous representatives hosted the second annual
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Expert Discussion Group on
AOD Harm in Sydney.
- ANACAD have been involved in monitoring the implementation of the
roll-out of the AOD treatment services funded by PHNs to ensure
equitable access and participation for Aboriginal and Torres Strait
Islander Populations through involvement in Department of Health
Assessment and Review Group.
- Alcohol Related Harms:
- Provided advice on a number of related issues including prevention of
uptake of alcohol and efficacy of different prevention programs.
- Emerging Trends and Evidence
- Data continues to be a key priority for ANACAD and providing advice on current data sources, their strengths and limitations and how triangulation of data can assist in planning.
- Gaps in current approaches and evidence
- Advice on options for considering clinical trials in the AOD space.
At its May 2017 meeting, ANACAD discussed and reviewed the 2016-17 work plan.
As a Council, members agreed to shift from an annual work plan to a strategically
focused three year work plan from 2017-18.
Meeting and engagements
The ANACAD met face to face on on three occasions through 2016-17:
- 24-26 October 2016 – Alice Springs, NT
- 16-17 February 2017 – Canberra, ACT
- 17-18 May 2017 – Hobart, TAS
Engagement with community and sector
Members of ANACAD have attended meetings, forums and engaged with the community and other stakeholders with AOD linkages throughout 2016-17 including:
- State and Territory government and community organisations.
- The National Drug Research Institute.
- The Department of Social Services.
- The Poppy Advisory and Control Board.
- The Office of Drug Control.
- Community consultations and site visits including to various AOD treatment
and rehabilitation providers.
- 4th National Indigenous Drug and Alcohol Conference.
- National AOD Awards.
- Australian Institute of Health and Welfare.
- FASD consultation activities.
In March 2017 the Chair was a member of the Australian Delegation to the
Commission on Narcotic Drugs 60th session.
ANACAD has also hosted guests at meetings throughout the period including various
Federal Government Ministers, Life Education Australia, Department of Health
officials and representatives of non-government organisations including Central
Australian Aboriginal Congress.
ANACAD has also met with a number of Government Ministers, both in formal
council meetings and out of session. These include Ministers from a range of
portfolio with AOD linkages including Health and Indigenous Affairs.