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June 2013

Students with medical dummy jpeg
Copperfield College and Essendon Keilor College secondary school nurse Michael Malady and Western Health Director of Education and Learning Louise McKinlay with Copperfield College students Amy Lai, Dylan D-Roza and Dianna Duong.

Students learn booze lesson

Western Health has joined forces with two local colleges in a bid to reduce the number of emergency department presentations from drug and alcohol abuse among young people in the region.

The Western Alcohol Reduction Program (WARP), made possible from $50,000 funding from School Focused Youth Services, is being run at Sunshine Hospital’s Western Centre for Health, Research and Education in conjunction with Essendon Keilor and Copperfield Colleges.

The program plans six sessions this year – each involving students in activities to educate them on risk-taking drug and alcohol behaviours.

As part of the program, Sunshine Hospital Emergency Department Clinical Nurse Specialist Voula Munro and Dr David Mai worked with students to produce a DVD on the harmful effects of binge drinking and the consequences of decisions young people make when under the influence of drugs and alcohol.

The DVD will be used throughout the program.

‘It has been fantastic to see so many organisations come together to make this program happen, including School Focused Youth Services, Victoria Police, Brimbank Youth Services, the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development and, of course, Western Health,’ said Sunshine Hospital Emergency Department Clinical Nurse Educator and WARP Project Leader Samantha Mineo.

‘Unfortunately, presentations relating to alcohol consumption are not a rare occurrence.

‘What is most concerning is an increasing number of these people are young,’ Ms Mineo said.

‘Hopefully, through the program, we can start to reduce this number.’