Simplifying finding local appropriate AOD services for your patients

  26 April 2019  Dr Jeannie Knapp   |   Third party content – view disclaimer

Alcohol and Other Drug (AOD) clients form a large part of any general practice and can provide unique challenges. Finding appropriate publiclyfunded services in a fragmented system is one of the big challenges faced by GPs on a regular basis. Locating those services can seem overwhelming and confusing but it needn’t be. Here are the short cuts to finding local AOD services for your patients. 

HealthPathways Melbourne: A ‘One stop shop’ for clinical advice and referral information

HealthPathways Melbourne is a Primary Health Network (PHN) initiative providing clinical advice but also referral services mapping. It is the best ‘one-stop-shop’ for information on AOD services and includes information on all services in our region, including direct access to PHN-funded local services. Anyone can refer to local services including selfreferral – so, there is no need to write referrals or wait on the phone – simply give the appropriate number to the patient 

Healthpathways Melbourne has two relevant referral pages: 

For access to HealthPathways please contact

Services funded by North Western Melbourne Primary Health Network (NWMPHN) 

NWMPHN funds 20 service providers to deliver AOD treatment across north west Melbourne, with activity delivered through 27 programs. You can search these services on our website or through HealthPathways. 

State intake: North west 1800 700 514, Central (Macedon Ranges) 1300 022 760 for residential and other services 

State intake is a centralised intake service for access to publicly funded residential services and some other services.  

If you are in doubt about which service to call, use HealthPathways because all services are listed here with simple referral pathways. 

DirectLine 1800 888 236: Community services 

DirectLine is an anonymous, confidential 24/7 service that takes calls from anyone. They provide:  

  • Information, counselling and referral around alcohol and drug issues 
  • An immediate and highly accessible alcohol and drug response service, especially to populations in remote areas 
  • Brief interventions within a harm minimisation framework to prevent or reduce problems associated with drug use 
  • Access to a 24/7 service by phone or online 

Drug and Alcohol Clinical Advisory Service (DACAS) 

Don’t forget the excellent DACAS (Drug and Alcohol Clinical Advisory Service) service – 1800 812 804 – providing 24/7 free clinical advice to clinicians from addiction medicine specialists

Disclaimer: This article was provided by Dr Jeannie Knapp. While every effort has been made to ensure the information is accurate, North Western Melbourne Primary Health Network does not warrant or represent the accuracy, currency and completeness of any information or material included within.