Health
Department of Health and Human Services

Severe Substance Dependence Treatment Act 2010

The Severe Substance Dependence Treatment Act 2010 (the Act), provides for the detention and treatment of people with severe substance dependence in a treatment centre where this is necessary as a matter of urgency to save the person’s life or prevent serious damage to their health.

Detention must be the only means by which treatment can be provided and there must be no less restrictive means reasonably available to ensure the treatment.

In addition, the peson must be incapable of making decisions about their substance use and personal health, welfare and safety due primarily to their substance dependence.

The purpose is to give the person access to medically-assisted withdrawal, time to recover, capacity to make decisions about their substance use, and the opportunity to engage in voluntary treatment.

Detention and treatment must always be an option of last resort.

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

Flowchart

Overview of procedure for making a detention and treatment order under the Severe Substance Dependence Treatment Act 2010 - March 2011 (24kb, pdf)

Guidelines

Severe Substance Dependence Treatment Act 2010 - A summary (55kb, pdf)

Severe Substance Dependence Treatment Act 2010

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.

Hard copies of the Severe Substance Dependence Treatment Act and Regulations can be purchased from:

Government response to the review of the Severe Substance Dependence Treatment Act 2010

The Severe Substance Dependence Treatment Act (2010) allows for the detention and treatment of adults with a severe substance dependence where this is necessary as a matter of urgency to save the person’s life or prevent serious damage to the person’s health.

Section 41 of the Act requires the responsible Minister to ensure a review of the Act is undertaken by 1 March 2015. The purpose of the review is to determine whether the objectives of the Act are being achieved and are still appropriate, and whether the Act is effective or needs to be amended.

An independent reviewer examined the program operating under the Act, and considered contributions from 68 organisations and individuals, including consumers and family members of people with substance use issues. A final report has been submitted.

As required by the Act, a Government response to the final report has been prepared.

The Government’s response to the review of the Act and the final report of the review (two volumes) are available as follows:

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.