Tasmania

In 2019–20, 23 publicly funded alcohol and other drug treatment agencies in Tasmania provided 3,715 closed treatment episodes to 2,761 clients (tables SA.1, SCR.21).

Tasmania reported:

  • a 4% decrease in closed treatment episodes from 3,856 in 2018–19 to 3,715 in 2019–20, and a 3% decrease in closed treatment episodes since 2015–16 (3,840)
  • client numbers decreased from 2,973 in 2015–16 to 2,761 in 2019–20 (note: 2015–16 client numbers are based on imputed values).

The visualisation shows that 3,715 closed treatment episodes were provided to an estimated 2,761 clients in Tasmania in 2019–20. This equates to a rate of 781 episodes and 580 clients per 100,000 population, a lower rate than the 1,064 episodes and 624 clients per 100,000 population reported nationally.

 


Client demographics

In 2019–20:

  • most (93%) clients in Tasmania received treatment for their own alcohol or drug use, of which, most (66%) were male (Figure 21)
  • clients receiving treatment for someone else’s alcohol or drug use were more likely to be female (78%)
  • over half (51%) of all clients were aged 20–39 years
  • over 1 in 10 (12%) of all clients identified as Indigenous Australians, which is lower than the national proportion (17%)  
  • the majority (95%) of all clients were born in Australia and nearly all (96%) reported English as their preferred language (tables SC Tas.1–3, SC.4, SC TAS.21–22).

The visualisation includes a series of horizontal bar graphs showing that, in 2019–20, over 9 in 10 (93%) clients in Tasmania received treatment for their own drug use. Of these clients, two-thirds (66%) were male, 54% were aged 20–39, and 12% were Indigenous Australians. Nearly all clients (96%) listed English as their preferred language and were born in Australia (95%).

Patterns of service use

Over the period 2015–16 to 2019–20, 9,960 clients received treatment in Tasmania. Of these clients:

  • the majority received treatment in a single year (75%):
    • 16% (1,616) received treatment for the first time in 2019–20
    • a further 59% (5,844) received treatment in only one of the four collection periods (excluding 2019–20)
  • 17% (1,664) of clients received treatment in any 2 of the 5 years
  • 5.9% (586) of clients received treatment in any 3 of the 5 years
  • 1.8% (182) of clients received treatment in any 4 of the 5 years
  • 0.7% (68) of clients received treatment in all 5 collection years (Table SCR.28).

Drugs of concern

In 2019–20, for clients in Tasmania receiving treatment episodes for their own alcohol or drug use:

  • alcohol was the most common principal drug of concern (40% of episodes) (Figure 22; Table SE TAS.10).
  • amphetamines as a principal drug of concern accounted for 3 in10 episodes (30%), followed by cannabis (19%), and morphine (1.5%);
  • within the amphetamines group:
    • methamphetamine was reported as a principal drug of concern in over 9 in 10 (93%) treatment episodes (Figure 22a)
    • in over half (52%) of treatment episodes where methamphetamine was a principal drug of concern, injecting was the most common method of use, followed by smoking (33%) (Figure 22b).

Clients can nominate up to 5 additional drugs of concern; these drugs are not necessarily the subject of any treatment within the episode (see Technical notes).

In 2019–20, when the client reported additional drugs of concern:

  • cannabis was the most common additional drug of concern (19% of episodes), followed by amphetamines (11%), alcohol and nicotine (both 8%) (Table SE TAS.11).

Over the period 2015–16 to 2019–20:

  • alcohol was the most common principal drug of concern for clients, fluctuating from 38% in 2016–17 to 41% in 2018–19 and 40% in 2019–20 (Table SE TAS.10)
  • amphetamines replaced cannabis as the second most common principal drug of concern in 2016–17, increasing from 22% to 30% over the period
  • cannabis decreased from 26% to 19%
  • within the amphetamines group, methamphetamine was reported as the principal drug of concern in almost 2 in 3 episodes (65%) in 2015–16, rising to 93% in 2019–20 (Figure 22a)
  • although morphine accounts for a small proportion of all closed treatment episodes (ranging from 3.3% in 2015–16 to 1.5% in 2019–20) it has consistently remained higher than the national proportions.
    • morphine was 4 times higher in 2015–16 to 7 times higher in 2017–18, although the proportion has been decreasing, it remains 5 times higher than the national proportion in 2019–20 (Table SD.2).

The grouped horizontal bar chart shows that, in 2019–20, alcohol was the most common principal drug of concern in treatment episodes provided to clients in Tasmania for their own drug use (40%). This was followed by amphetamines (30.1%), cannabis (19%), and morphine (1.5%). Cannabis was the most common additional drug of concern (19% of episodes), followed by amphetamines (11%), alcohol (8.1%), and nicotine (7.8%).

The line graph shows that, between 2015–16 and 2019–20, methamphetamine has remained the most common drug of concern among meth/amphetamine-related treatment episodes for clients’ own use. The proportion of methamphetamine-related episodes increased from 65% in 2015–16 to 93% in 2019–20. Conversely, there was a decrease in the proportion of episodes relating to amphetamines (from 34% to 6.6%).

The stacked horizontal bar chart shows the method of use for treatment episodes related to clients’ own use of meth/amphetamines in Tasmania in 2019–20. Injecting was the most common method of use for treatment episodes relating to amphetamine (38%), methamphetamine (52%), and other amphetamines (43%). Smoking was the second most common method of use for methamphetamine (33%) and amphetamine (26%), while ingesting (43%) was the same proportion as injecting for other amphetamines.  


Treatment

In 2019–20, for treatment episodes in Tasmania:

  • counselling was the most common main treatment (49% of episodes), followed by rehabilitation (20%) (Figure 23; Table SE TAS. 20)
  • where an additional treatment was provided as a supplementary to the main treatment, counselling (7%) was the most common type of additional treatment, followed by support and case management (3%). See technical notes for further information on calculating proportions for additional treatment type.

Over the period 2015–16 to 2019–20:

  • counselling remained the most common main treatment, with the proportion of closed episodes rising from 43% in 2015–16 to 49% in 2019–20
  • assessment only decreased from 29% in 2015–16 to 18% in 2019–20
  • rehabilitation increased from 2015–16 (15%) to 2016–17 (24%) before decreasing in 2019–20 (20%); the proportion of episodes for rehabilitation is higher than the national proportion over this time period (Table SE TAS.20).

The grouped horizontal bar chart shows that, in 2019–20, the most common main treatment type provided to clients in Tasmania for their own drug use was counselling (49% of episodes). This was followed by rehabilitation (20%), assessment only (18%), and support and case management (5.4%). Counselling was also the most common additional treatment type (7.4%).


Agencies

Tasmania only has the geographical classifications of Inner regional, Outer regional and Remote areas.

In 2019–20, in Tasmania:

  • almost 2 in 3 (65%) of the 23 AOD agencies that received public funding were non-government treatment agencies
  • 65% of agencies were located in Inner regional areas, followed by Outer regional (35%) (Figure 24; Table SA.3)
  • agencies located in Inner regional and Outer regional areas were more likely to be non-government organisations.

In the 5 years to 2019–20, the number of publicly funded treatment agencies in Tasmania rose from 23 in 2015–16 to 27 in 2017–18 before falling to 23 again in 2019–20 (Table SA.1).

Note that remoteness categories are derived by applying a correspondence based on the agency’s Statistical Area level 2 code (SA2). Not all SA2 codes fit neatly within a single remoteness category, and a ratio is applied to reapportion each SA2 to the applicable remoteness categories. As a result, it is possible that the number of agencies in a particular remoteness category is not a whole number. After rounding, this can result in there being ‘<0.5%’ agencies in a remoteness area, due to the agency’s SA2 partially crossing into the remoteness area. See technical notes for further details.

The horizontal bar chart shows that Tasmania does not have any areas classified as Major cities, Remote or Very remote. Treatment agencies were located in Inner regional (15 agencies) and Outer regional (8 agencies) areas. Of the total 23 treatment agencies, most (15 agencies) were non-government agencies.