The COVID-19 pandemic is presenting unique challenges for pharmacotherapy providers to provide continuum of care whilst also ensuring the safety of their patients and staff.
The Pharmacotherapy Area-Based Networks have been working closely with the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services, key stakeholders and providers to develop a series of guides for providing pharmacotherapy services during the COVID-19 pandemic. Find an overview with links to the guides on our new, dedicated COVID-19 page.
The Pharmacotherapy Area-Based Networks
The Pharmacotherapy Area-Based Networks (PABN) are a Victorian Government initiative to provide opioid pharmacotherapy support for primary care medical practitioners and pharmacists across the state of Victoria including metropolitan, regional and rural areas.
Each PABN provides connections between primary health care, hospitals and Alcohol and Other Drug (AOD) services to create a more cohesive and strengthened pharmacotherapy service system.
What is pharmacotherapy?
Pharmacotherapy is Medication Assisted Treatment of Opioid Dependence (MATOD). It includes treatments such as methadone and buprenorphine (Subutex®, Suboxone®). Pharmacotherapy is also known as Opioid Replacement Therapy (ORT), and Opioid Substitution Therapy (OST). In Victoria, most pharmacotherapy is provided via a community model, mainly via General Practitioner (GP) and pharmacist service providers. Additional services may be provided by nurse practitioners, community health organisations and specialist nurses and AOD workers.
Your local PABN provides local support
There are two metropolitan and three regional PABNs. Each PABN is structured to meet local need and includes highly qualified management and specialist teams such as GPs, Addiction Medicine Specialists (AMS), Clinical and AOD nurses, and pharmacists. These teams recognise the diverse needs of practitioners and patients, and provide innovative and flexible approaches to meeting local needs. See our About page and the contact details for your local PABN.