Examining AOD patterns, prevalence and related issues among Australian workers

May 2020

Professor Ann Roche
Dr Janine Chapman
Ms Donna Hughes-Barton
Dr Susan Kim
Mr Nathan Harrison

Project description: 

High rates of AOD use among Australian workers are associated with numerous negative consequences for both individuals and organisations. This includes excess absenteeism and the impact of AOD use on workers’ wellbeing and performance and the duty of care afforded by employers.

Drawing on NCETA’s extensive experience and knowledge in responding to workplace AOD-related issues, the Australian Government Department of Health has funded the Centre to conduct in-depth analyses of national datasets and undertake innovative primary research to determine:

  1. Descriptive patterns of AOD use (cross sectional and time series) by industry and occupation groups
  2. Profile of users and relationships between AOD use with key socio-economic factors (e.g. mental health, rurality)
  3. Predictors of risky workplace AOD use and high AOD use among certain industry and occupation groups
  4. Consequences of patterns of use for workers and organisations in relation to specific harms and impacts
  5. The relationship between AOD use patterns and workplace policies across industries
  6. Intervention efficacy addressed through a systematic review (e.g. drug testing, worker education, online interventions, other workplace-based interventions)
  7. New and emerging AOD issues impacting the workplace, such as the use of prescribed medications and the potential for interaction with other drug types
  8. Implications for the design and implementation of evidence-informed interventions, with a particular focus on at-risk groups such as young workers and the school-to-work transition phase, and those working in safety-critical industries.

NCETA will produce a suite of research outputs from this study including:

  • Infographics detailing patterns and prevalence of use
  • Detailed reports, research translation and recommendations for workplaces and governments to reduce the impact of AOD in high-risk
  • Peer-reviewed publications.