Talking Point: Dual diagnosis of mental illness and substance use disorder: an underappreciated determinant of health disparities, presented by Dr Jesse Young, PhD MPH BSc, presented on the 17th of November 2021


Treatment and health outcomes experienced by people with dual diagnosis is an internationally recognised evidence gap. Despite emerging international evidence that people with dual diagnosis experience substantial health disparities, robust evidence on the treatment and health outcomes for people with dual diagnosis in Australia remains scarce. Furthermore, despite decades of calls to action and the promotion of Australia's 'no wrong door' policy, our capacity to identify and treat dual diagnosis in the Australian health system remains suboptimal. This is a well-documented impediment to achieving equitable mental healthcare. This seminar will present findings from Dr Young's program of work which has applied unique data linkage methodology to quantify health and health service use outcomes associated with dual diagnosis. An overview of the Australian arm of the multinational International Naturalistic Cohort Study on ADHD and substance use disorders, a large prospective cohort study in progress, will be provided. Opportunities for evidence-based policy reform will be discussed.

About the presenter

Dr Jesse Young: is a NHMRC Emerging Leadership Fellow in the Centre for Health Equity at The University of Melbourne specialising in psychiatric epidemiology with leading expertise in data linkage methodology. He holds Adjunct positions at the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, the School of Population and Global Health at the University of Western Australia, and the National Drug Research Institute at Curtin University. He is a member of the Australian Institute for Health and Welfare’s National Prisoner Health Information Committee and Technical Expert Group. Since 2014, Dr Young has authored over 100 scholarly works including 61 peer-reviewed publications. His research has been cited in and informed national and international guidelines for the treatment of substance use disorder, the prevention of overdose, access to health services for people released from prison, and pandemic management and preparedness. In recognition of the quality and impact of his work, Dr Young was conferred the 2020 Victorian Premier’s Award for Health and Medical Research in Public Health Research.