Since 2013, ACEM has conducted research across Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand to quantify the burden of alcohol and other drugs on emergency departments. 

There is a lack of nationally consistent data quantifying the extent and impact of alcohol and other drugs harm in emergency departments in our region. To fill this research gap, ACEM conducts a number of different surveys to estimate the prevalence of these presentations and further our understanding of their contribution to the emergency department workload. Surveys include: 

  • Alcohol Harm Snapshots Surveys that are usually taken during a weekend night shift to note the number of emergency department presentations related to alcohol. Methamphetamine-related presentations have been captured in the Snapshot since 2018. 
  • Seven-day continuous surveys that are similar to a snapshot survey except undertaken over a week-long period, instead of during a single shift. 
  • Emergency clinical staff perception surveys that are used to gather staff experiences of alcohol-affected patients in emergency departments. 

ACEM is also involved in the Driving Change project, a collaboration between ACEM and nine participating hospitals in Melbourne, Geelong, Sydney, Canberra and Warrnambool, and Deakin University, Central Queensland University, the University of New South Wales, Australian National University and Cardiff University (Wales). The project is funded by the National Health and Medical Research Council and St Vincent’s Health Australia.

Read ACEM’s media releases about the Driving Change project.