The Victorian Severe Substance Dependence Treatment Act 2010 (the Act) allows for a brief period of detention and compulsory treatment of people where this is necessary as a matter of urgency to save the person’s life or prevent serious damage to their health.

The Act came into effect in Victoria on 1 March 2011.

The Act provides a critical intervention that will give the person time out from their substance dependence, access to medically assisted withdrawal, a chance to recover their capacity and the opportunity to engage in voluntary treatment.

It is a last resort treatment option for a very small group of people who, without this life saving intervention, would most likely become permanently disabled or die.

Detention and treatment is limited to a maximum of 14 days.

The Act is not targeted to people who are capable of making choices about their substance use, including refusing treatment.

Provisions of the Act

The Act defines criteria for making a detention and treatment order and the process for making the order. It includes provisions for what happens once a person is admitted to the declared treatment centre.

How to obtain a copy of the Act

Copies of the Severe Substance Dependence Treatment Act 2010 and the Severe Substance Dependence Treatment Regulations 2011 can be viewed or downloaded from the Victorian Legislation and Parliamentary Documents website.

For a hard copy of the Severe Substance Dependence Treatment Act and Regulations contact the Victorian Government Contact Centre on 1300 366 356.

Disclaimer

The information provided on these pages is intended as general information about the Severe Substance Dependence Treatment Act and Regulations and not as legal advice. If individuals or service providers have queries about their obligations under the Act they should obtain independent legal advice.