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The Reasons For Use Package


This article is brought to you by RFUP, with thanks to HACSU members Simon Kroes and Kevan Myers.

We want to introduce you to this exciting new tool, The Reasons For Use Package (RFUP). It is an excellent, consumer-focussed tool that was developed as a dual diagnosis resource in consultation with consumers, carers and clinicians. It has been used widely across Australia in clinical mental health, mental health community support and alcohol and other drug and housing services.

This highly effective tool was co-developed by dedicated HACSU members Simon Kroes and Kevan Myers of Nexus at St Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne.

The RFUP consists of the Reasons for Use Scale (Castle et al, 2006), and potential follow up strategies to explore with the consumer. The package includes a specific “spirit” guiding the desired approach: a collaborative and supportive process between staff and the consumer using the RFUP as a doorway to conversation about dual diagnosis.

When training in RFUP, staff receive training and mentoring in how to use the RFUP in the “spirit” of the tool. The consumer is supported to actively explore their dual diagnosis issues. This deliberately shifts the power balance to the consumer and moves away from a pathologising, medical model of care. The consumer decides on treatment options and together with the staff member, gains a shared understanding of the treatment process whilst being actively involved in negotiating the treatment plan.

A national evaluation trial in 2015 involving over 100 staff found that the RFUP has several benefits including, but not limited to: 

  • Increasing staff confidence and knowledge around dual diagnosis interventions in a straight forward manner
  • Recovery-based and consumer focussed
  • Consumers find it collaborative and useful
  • User friendly for a range of health and welfare personnel
  • Highly cost effective to train and use the resource
  • Aligns with current State and National mental health and alcohol and other drugs strategies


If you are interested in learning more, you can click here or go to the website:

More information is also available on the St Vincent’s website at: