Arcadia House (Directions Health Services)

Provides withdrawal, residential and day treatments for clients who wish to cease their use of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs, including: 7 – 14 day non-medicated withdrawal support for people experiencing withdrawal from ATOD; 12 week day program; and 12 week combined residential rehabilitation and day program.

Telephone: (02) 6129 5900
Fax: (02) 6251 2070
Mailing Address: PO Box 538, Woden ACT 2606
Email address:
Location: Villa A, Brian Hennessey House, Mary Potter Cct, Bruce ACT 2617 (Calvary Hospital campus)
Parent organisation: Directions Health Services

Access Information

Maximum waiting time for service: 

  • Withdrawal: Up to one month
  • Residential transition program: Up to three months
  • Day Program: From 1 – 12 weeks
  • Waiting periods can vary, some circumstances allow for priority access to the program (call for eligibility)

Pre-Treatment support:

  • Support available on the waiting list
  • Assessment
  • Counselling
  • Phone support
  • Information and advice
  • Case management
  • Active referrals and support to access other services

Target Group:

  • Adults
  • Men and women
  • Accepts both ACT and interstate residents

Documentation required:

  • Identification
  • Medicare Card
  • Concession Card
  • Criminal history
  • Court reports
  • Medical records
  • Prescriptions
  • Mental health report if requested

When and how to access:

Operating Hours: Program operating hours are 24 hours a day (7 days a week), office operating hours are 9am – 5pm (Monday – Friday)
Ways to access: By appointment only
Referrals accepted from: Self, friend/family, another service, GP, Courts, Corrective Services, Police, but no referral required
Other access information:

For residential program there is a requirement to complete a withdrawal program. The service provides non-medicated withdrawal support. If participants require a medically supervised or assisted withdrawal program, this must be completed prior to admission.

All court matters must be adjourned unless discussed and approved prior to admission.

ACT clients on opioid maintenance therapies can access both residential and day programs. 

Some medication exclusions may apply (e.g. benzodiazepines).


  • Assessment required
  • Appointment required
  • Over the phone
  • Face to face
  • Takes less than 1 hour

Specialist ATOD assessment includes:

  • Comprehensive alcohol, tobacco and other drug assessment
  • Comprehensive mental health history
  • Basic Physical health & medical history
  • Social and family history
  • Domestic and family violence screening
  • Criminal and legal history
  • Risk assessment
  • Suicide risk assessment

Treatment Plan

  • An individualised treatment plan will be developed

Drug Testing

  • Drug testing is conducted as part of treatment; the tests are conducted in-house/on-site by program staff
  • Types of testing used include urine drug screening,  breath alcohol concentration by Alcohol Breathalyzer and smoking status by Smokerlyser

Admission Requirements for Residential Services Only

  • Mobile phone stored during stay
  • Frisk search and emptying of pockets required
  • Searching of possessions
  • Possessions stored during stay
  • Confiscation and disposal of tobacco, alcohol and other drugs
  • Other (i.e. Webster packed prescription medication and repeat scripts, own instant coffee)


Program type: Residential non-medicated withdrawal, residential rehabilitation and non-residential day program

Model: Therapeutic community principles. Therapeutic frameworks include motivational interviewing, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Solution Focussed Brief Therapy and Mindfulness.

Duration and intensity: Up to 12 weeks

Not able to consume alcohol or other drugs while in program: No alcohol or other drugs to be consumed during program

Philosophical approach: Therapeutic community principles, harm minimisation

Additional program description: 

Residential withdrawal and therapeutic program: Provides 7-14 day non-medicated residential support for people experiencing withdrawal from ATOD and a 12-week transition program (incorporating 8-week residential program followed by 4-week day program). For clients living outside ACT, the program can be completed as 12 weeks residential. This includes case management, living skills, therapeutic and educational groups and healthy lifestyle activities.

An individual treatment plan will be developed in collaboration with the allocated case manager and referral to other Directions programs is available (including group counselling and the Althea Wellness Centre).

Day Program: Provides a 12-week non-residential Day Program  that operates alongside the residential program between 9am and 4pm, Monday – Friday.

Additional supports available:

  • Community and Work Orders
  • Vocational education (i.e. including food handling)
  • Recreation and sport
  • Brokerage
  • Living skills
  • Aftercare

Viral Hepatitis and Sexual Health Support

  • Referrals to access screening, treatment and ongoing monitoring for viral hepatitis with Althea Wellness Centre
  • Supports people with advanced liver disease to access ongoing liver monitoring support through external organisations
  • Referrals to access screening & treatment for sexually transmitted infections with external providers
  • Provides safe sex information
  • Partnerships with Hepatitis & sexual health organisations

Aftercare and Exit of Service

  • Documented exit plan
  • Aftercare support is available
  • Relapse prevention
  • Links with community self help groups (e.g. 12 step program)
  • Active referrals and support to access other services
  • Arcadia House Continuum of Care Officer provides aftercare support and referral for all clients exiting Arcadia

Harm Reduction

  • Harm reduction drug and education and strategies (i.e safer injecting information)
  • Provides safe sex information


  • Opioid overdose prevention and education sessions
  • Program provides access to Naloxone script through Althea Wellness Centre

Mental Health

  • Screen for mental health
  • Assessments include a mental health component
  • Suicide risk assessment
  • Staff have mental health training
  • Partnerships with mental health services
  • Mental health services in-reach

Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander

  • Staff undertake Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander cultural awareness training

Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD)

  • Access to interpreter services
  • Culturally and linguistically diverse staff
  • Staff undertake cultural awareness training
  • Partnerships with CALD services

Tobacco Management

  • Smokefree
  • Tobacco management support and counselling
  • Nicotine replacement therapy provided including multiple types of NRT
  • Nicotine pharmacotherapy (GP appointment through Althea Wellness Centre)
  • Service has a tobacco management policy
  • Service participating the in the We Can ProgramCommunities Accessing all-types of NRT


Admission- Board and lodging for first weeks stay on admission

Rent & Fees: Rent of $220 per week (Residential only), $50 per week (Day Program)

Others: Support can be provided to access Centrelink and seek an exemption from requirement to be looking for work with Centrelink while engaged in program

Staff Available

  • Manager
  • AOD Worker (Clinical and Non-clinical)
  • Other (i.e. Case manager)
  • Nurse (Althea practice Nurse conducts outreach health screening)

Help for Families & Carers

  • Families and carers of people experiencing ATOD issues are able to access support through other Directions Health Services programs

Alexander Maconochie Centre

  • Assessments
  • Referrals for services are accepted from Community Based Corrections as part of a parole conditions

Other Information

  • Provides support letters for people to access Housing ACT
  • Preparation of reports for Care and Protection
  • Preparation of reports for Courts
  • Preparation of reports for Corrective Services
  • Restoration planning for families with children involved with Child Protection systems

Last Updated on April 2019

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