General delivery structures and quality assurance measures

Section title

General delivery structures and quality assurance measures

Brief definition of policy approach

Meta approaches that provide the necessary context and infrastructures to facilitate the high quality implementation of effective policies and interventions;

Description of policy approaches

‘Meta approaches’ that provide the necessary context and infrastructures to facilitate the high quality implementation of effective policies and interventions. Ritter and McDonald (2008: 23) use the term ‘infrastructure interventions’ to describe research, monitoring and evaluation, and define these as “those [activities] that provide the foundations (or could or should provide the foundations) for many of the other interventions”; and they go on to say that “unlike most of the other approaches that are proximate to impacting on drug use and harm, these three interventions [research, monitoring and evaluation] are more distal, providing evidence about, for or against particular policies and intervention strategies, and their implementation”. This definition is expanded to include measures such as: national policy documents specific to alcohol, tobacco, illegal drugs and/or gambling; dedicated authorities dealing with these issues; workforce development towards achieving specific professional competencies; and dedicated funding streams.

Ritter A, McDonald D (2008) Illicit drug policy: Scoping the interventions and taxonomies. Drugs: Education, Prevention, and Policy 15(1): 15–35.

Typical measures included under this approach

  1. Policy and legislation, including enforcement
    • Multiple behaviours – Policies addressing several substances and/or addictive behaviours; Inclusion of substance/addiction related issues in other policy areas / integration of policies into broad economic and welfare policies
    • Alcohol – National alcohol plan/strategy; regional alcohol plan/strategy; General alcohol control legislation; Definition of sanctions/penalties targeting sellers and consumers; enforcement
    • Tobacco – National tobacco plan/strategy; regional tobacco plan/strategy; general alcohol control legislation; enforcement
    • Illegal drugs – International treaties/conventions; National drug plan/strategy; regional drug plan/strategy; general drug control legislation; criminal laws on drug use; criminal penalties targeting sellers and consumers; law enforcement; police cautions
    • Gambling – general gambling legislation; control of gambling providers
  2. Research and information
    • Alcohol – research; monitoring and evaluation; reports on alcohol situation and policy responses
    • Tobacco – research; monitoring and evaluation; reports on tobacco situation and policy responses
    • Illegal drugs – research; monitoring and evaluation; reports on drug situation and policy responses
    • Gambling – research; monitoring and evaluation; register of licensed operators of gambling services
  3. Funding
    • Alcohol – Public funds designated for alcohol research/monitoring programmes; technical and financial support for providers
    • Tobacco – public funds for tobacco control; technical and financial support for providers
    • Illegal drugs – public funds for tobacco control; technical and financial support for providers
    • Gambling – No approaches identified
  4. Stakeholder involvement and international cooperation
    • All behaviours – international cooperation; stakeholder involvement

Summary of available evidence for interventions and policies

  1. Beneficial
    • No evidence identified
  2. Likely to be beneficial
    • No evidence identified
  3. Mixed evidence
    • No evidence identified
  4. Unknown effectiveness
    • No evidence identified
  5. Ineffective
    • No evidence identified