Key messages

  • Telephone and online services in Victoria have an important role in offering counselling and assistance for alcohol and other drug users, their families and support people. These services also provide information and education, contacts for self-help groups and referral for treatment.
  • DirectLine is the statewide entry point to the Victorian public alcohol and other drug treatment system. It provides 24-hour confidential telephone counselling, information and referral for Victorians.
  • The Drug and Alcohol Clinical Advisory Service (DACAS) offers free clinical advice over the telephone for Victorian health and welfare professionals who have concerns about the clinical management of patients with alcohol and other drug use issues.
  • There is a wide range of other telephone and online services for alcohol and other drug users and their families and support people, and for health and human service professionals.

Role of telephone and online services in the treatment system

Telephone and online services have an important role in the alcohol and other drug treatment system, often as the first point of contact for alcohol and other drug users, their families and support people across Victoria.

Telephone and online services provide confidential counselling and assistance, information and education, self-assessment tools, contacts for self-help groups and referral for treatment.

About telephone and online services

DirectLine

DirectLine is the statewide entry point to the Victorian public alcohol and other drug treatment system. It is a useful first point of contact for alcohol and other drug users, and health and human service providers, including general practitioners. DirectLine operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

DirectLine identifies whether a person is potentially dependent on alcohol and/or other drugs and requires referral to a catchment-based intake and assessment service, where comprehensive screening and assessment will take place.

Dependent users are offered a range of telephone and online supports by DirectLine, including information and advice, brief interventions, worker-facilitated and self-guided supports, and referrals to other support services.

DirectLine is staffed by professional counsellors at Turning Point, a centre of excellence for alcohol and other drug treatment, research and education, and now part of Eastern Health.

DirectLine can be accessed over the phone, on 1800 888 236 or online at www.directline.org.au.

Drug and Alcohol Clinical Advisory Service

The Drug and Alcohol Clinical Advisory Service (DACAS), is a free specialist telephone consultancy service for health and welfare professionals in Victoria. It operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

DACAS offers clinical advice to health and welfare professionals who have concerns about the clinical management of patients and clients with alcohol and other drug use issues.

Assistance can be provided about a wide range of medical and psychiatric issues related to alcohol and other drug use.

DACAS consultants are addiction medicine specialists, qualified to help with enquiries about medical and psychiatric issues related to alcohol and other drug use and their management.

Other telephone and online services

A wide range of other telephone and online services are provided for alcohol and other drug users and their families and support people and for health and human services professionals.

Useful alcohol and other drugs service details

Alcohol and drug services

HIV/AIDS resources

Advocacy

Education and awareness

Research

Strategy