Talking Point: Predictors of cognitive functioning in presentations to addiction neuropsychology: Are we paying enough attention to modifiable risk factors? presented by Dr James Gooden on 21st July 2021


Individuals with alcohol or other drug (AOD) use disorders often identify a high degree of concern about their cognitive health. Cognitive impairment may arise from a range of aetiologies including acquired brain injury, psychiatric conditions, substance use, or neurodevelopmental weaknesses and can have a significant impact on treatment outcomes and recovery. For these individuals, a further complication is the risk of having their cognitive complaints misattributed or minimised leading to lack of further investigation, treatment and subsequently further harm. Within AOD services, there is an increasing demand for neuropsychology assessment and consultation services, with referrers wanting to better understand how to best work with their clients to facilitate better outcomes. This highlights the need for considering the role of brain health and cognitive functioning within drug and alcohol treatment.

About the presenter

Dr James Gooden is a clinical neuropsychologist and clinician researcher based at the Turning Point Neuropsychology Clinic in Richmond, Victoria, where he provides specialised neuropsychological assessments in response to a range of diagnostic and support related referral questions to clients from the AOD sector. His caseload regularly involves in individuals experiencing a high degree of clinical complexity including comorbid traumatic or acquired brain injury, alcohol and polysubstance use, mental health difficulty, complex trauma, forensic and psychosocial issues. He has a strong interest in the AOD, brain injury and adult neuropsychology fields and maintains an ongoing research profile within the clinic and through affiliations with Monash University. He has presented at a range of national and international conferences and delivered training and workshops across the AOD sector.