National Anti-Discrimination Training Module for Health Care Workers & Students

AIVL is currently developing a new training module designed to address stigma and discrimination in relation to injecting drug use, opioid pharmacotherapies and hepatitis C and other BBVs that can be used in a range of training and educational environments including with medical, nursing, pharmacy and dental professionals and students.

The need for the module was identified for a number of reasons including:

  1. Increases in available literature and anecdotal experiences documenting the high levels of stigma and discrimination experienced by people who inject drugs, people on opioid pharmacotherapies and people affected by hep C and other BBVs in healthcare settings;
  2. That AIVL and its member organisations are called upon in both a routine and ad hoc manner to provide one-off and regular training for health care workers, trainee registrars and students in health disciplines such as medicine, nursing, pharmacy, etc., on issues related to stigma and discrimination, ‘drug seeking behaviour’ and ‘doctor shopping’;
  3. That currently there are no standardised or agreed training programs to support AIVL and its member organisations in meeting the above requests for professional development and student training.; and
  4. That the National Hepatitis C Strategy 2010-2013 identifies “reducing hepatitis C-related stigma and discrimination in healthcare settings” as a key objective and “providing health care worker training in relation to stigma and discrimination” as a key priority action under the Strategy.

In response to the needs identified above, this module will provide a consistent training platform for use within health care worker and student training contexts. The module will include a power point presentation, facilitator guide/notes and key training materials including participant handouts.

Once developed, the availability of the module will be promoted through the AIVL website and publications and the AIVL member organisations at the state and territory level. It is anticipated that AIVL will use the module in health care worker training at the national level through relevant professional bodies including the Australasian Society for HIV Medicine (ASHM), the Royal College of General Practitioners (RACGP), Pharmacy Guild of Australia, Drug & Alcohol Nurses Association (DANA), the Australian Dental Association (ADA) and other relevant national professional or relevant student bodies. It is further anticipated, that the AIVL state and territory member organisations would promote the training module through relevant university faculties and other post-secondary training environments.

The module is being fully developed in consultation with the AIVL member organisations and a ‘train the trainer’ approach will be taken to supporting the state and territory drug user organisation in becoming familiar with the module and associated promotional materials once developed. AIVL has sought funding from 1 July 2012 from DoHA to focus on the promotion and roll-out of the module once development is finalised by 30 June 2012.

For further information on the training module please contact Tiia Harrison at or (02) 6279 1600.