Doctor Against Addiction unveils ‘A Prescription for Deaddiction’ campaign

The campaign seeks to empower doctors to play an active role in reducing various forms of addictions by intervening as early as possible at the consultation level 

Doctor Against Addiction (DaAD) has launched a sustained campaign called ‘A Prescription for Deaddiction’. The sharp-focused campaign seeks to empower doctors to play an active role in reducing various forms of addictions by intervening as early as possible at the consultation level.

“At the heart of the campaign lies a powerful symbol – “HRx.” This symbol represents a prescription for harm reduction, a commitment by doctors to address the harm caused by addiction and harmful behaviours. It serves as a beacon of hope and change. ‘A Prescription for Deaddiction’ is not just a campaign; it’s a call for action. It envisions a healthcare landscape where doctors can be champions of change, equipped with the knowledge, compassion, and tools needed to address harmful behaviours. Often, doctors routinely check height, weight, BP and sugar levels. Now they are being trained to identify classical symptoms of addictions of various forms,” says Dr Manish Sharma, Chief Coordinator, DaAD.

The “HRx” symbol allows doctors to specify the form of addiction or harmful behaviour they aim to address.

The genesis of DaAD became imminent because, in an increasingly complex world, individuals often find solace in various forms of behaviour and substances, from gadget addiction and alcohol to drugs and tobacco. While these may offer temporary relief or pleasure, they can also lead to significant harm to both the individual and society at large.

DaAD thinks that healthcare professionals can make a profound difference in deaddiction and promote healthier lifestyles as they are closely knit to the patients.

Deliberating on the potential of DaAD, and doctor-patient relationship, Dr Chhavi Gupta, DM – Infectious Disease, Senior Consultant at Yashoda Super-specialty Hospital, Kaushambi, Ghaziabad, says, “The foundation of any fruitful doctor-patient relationship is trust. And this is achieved when patients feel comfortable sharing their concerns, even when those concerns revolve around potentially harmful behaviours. By creating an atmosphere of trust and non-judgment, healthcare professionals can empower patients to open up and seek help. During these conversations, they can effectively counsel patients on deaddiction.”

‘A Prescription for Deaddiction’ (DaAD) is not a one-size-fits-all solution. It is a personalised approach, adapting strategies to individual patient needs for effective interventions. It emphasises involving patients in setting deaddiction goals and maintaining regular follow-ups for progress. Now, healthcare professionals are trained to advocate for addiction awareness and support community initiatives.

“Beyond physical harm, excessive behaviours can wreak havoc on mental well-being leading to anxiety, depression, and a diminished sense of self-worth. Alcohol and drug abuse can lead to altered mood states, cognitive impairment, and exacerbation of pre-existing mental health conditions. However, by approaching the conversation without judgment, healthcare professionals can make patients feel respected and understood. Consistent monitoring reinforces the doctor-patient partnership. A DaAD is a step forward in this direction, to help patients achieve their deaddiction goals,” says Dr Narender Saini, Former General Secretary, Indian Medical Association (IMA).




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