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AB7.2014 Enable access to services to those affected by someone else's use of alcohol or other substances


This standard is about enabling access to services to those affected by someone else's use of alcohol and other substances. This includes enabling those affected by someone else's use of alcohol or other substances to explore and select options, supporting those affected by someone else's substance use to put selected options into practice and empowering those affected by someone else's substance use to review the effectiveness of selected options. This standard relates to substances which may include alcohol, prescription and over-the-counter medicines, controlled or currently legal drugs, and new psychoactive substances. Users of this standard will need to ensure that practice reflects up to date information and policies. Version No 2

Knowledge and Understanding

You will need to know and understand:
  1. legal, organisational and policy requirements relevant to your role and the activities being carried out
  2. local systems, procedures and protocols for safeguarding children and young people
  3. the range of agencies and services available, including mutual aid and support groups/networks
  4. how to adapt communication styles in ways which meet the individual's needs, strengths and capabilities
  5. how to explain complex material to improve people's understanding, both orally and in writing
  6. how to support the choice and wellbeing of the individual which is appropriate to their needs and preferences
  7. motivational techniques and skills
  8. how family dynamics work and different family structures
  9. the different ways to solve problems in a family environment
  10. the principles of equality, diversity and anti-discriminatory practice and how they are applied
  11. how cultural, community, religious and ethnic identities can influence family dynamics
  12. how age, gender, cultural and social background, including the choice of substance being used can affect the working relationship
  13. how families can affect and be affected by substance use and why they require support in their own right
  14. the range of behaviours that can contribute to an individual's alcohol and substance use and involvement in treatment
  15. your responsibility and accountability for the wellbeing of individuals
  16. how substance use of others can impact on the emotional, social, physical and psychological development of children, young people and significant others and how to respond appropriately
  17. how to recognise the signs of injury, abuse or neglect in the individual and how to raise concerns with the appropriate person or agency
  18. issues that affect children and young people within families affected by alcohol and substance use
  19. issues that affect children and young people as carers
  20. the protection that individuals affected by someone else's substance use may require and how to make this protection available
  21. the range of different target populations, their different characteristics and needs
  22. the training and development opportunities available in the local area for those affected by someone else's substance use
  23. the services available to individuals for help with financial advice and assistance
  24. the principle of confidentiality and the implications for your practice
  25. the importance of keeping full and accurate records, and how to do so in line with organisational requirements

Performance Criteria

You must be able to do the following:
  1. respect the individual's right to confidentiality
  2. set up the appropriate environment to make the individual as comfortable as possible
  3. encourage the individual to identify issues concerning them
  4. provide up to date information on the range of options
  5. encourage the individual to explore the range of options available to them and are most appropriate to their needs
  6. encourage the individual to explore the advantages and disadvantages of the range of options
  7. encourage the individual to consider the implications of selecting an option
  8. encourage the individual to select an option and develop an action plan
  9. manage your own feelings caused by the selected option in a way which supports the right to such feelings whilst minimising any undue effects on the individual
  10. assist the individual in accessing the selected option, if required
  11. maintain contact with the individual which offers an optimum level of support without infringing on the individual's freedom
  12. develop and review the action plan regularly and encourage and motivate the individual to keep to the action plan
  13. encourage the individual to maintain focus on themselves and their own progress
  14. encourage the individual to seek further help and support, if necessary
  15. respect the individual's right to change their mind about taking the matter any further or selecting a different option
  16. ensure there are services available to protect children and young people affected by someone else's substance use, where required
  17. encourage the individual to feedback on progress
  18. encourage the individual to feedback on the effectiveness of support obtained
  19. identify any significant positive changes in the individual
  20. encourage and support the individual to review the action plan
  21. keep accurate and complete reports and store your records in a way which maintains the individual's confidentiality

Additional Information

This National Occupational Standard was developed by Skills for Health.This standard links with the following dimension within the NHS Knowledge and Skills Framework (October 2004): Dimension: HWB4 Enablement to address health and wellbeing needs
AB7.2014 Enable access to services to those affected by someone else's use of alcohol or other substances
Final version approved February 2014 © copyright Skills For Health,
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