Turkmenistan Drug Addiction Specialists Roll out a Training on Basic Communication with People with Substance Use Disorders and Their Families (UTC4)

11-15 December 2018, Ashgabat, Turkmenistan - Skills of counsellor have a considerable impact on the treatment process and the progress or defeat of subsequence use disorder. Personal attributes of specialist and his/her communication style influence the clients' motivation, their involvement in the treatment process, and treatment outcomes just as much, and, in some cases greater, than client's characteristics and applied consultancy techniques.

Development of communication skills for drug addiction professionals was discussed with the health providers representing narcology sector working in health and social protection for people with substance use disorders at the national training convened by UNODC Programme Office in Turkmenistan as a part of the UNODC Global project entitled "Treating drug dependence and its health consequences: Treatnet II".   

"We recognize that improvement of medical and social services for people who use drugs can contribute to the achievement of country's long-term goals of accelerating the growth and economic diversification while leaving no one behind. Development of health and social services is also central to the attainment of all Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly SDG 3, to benefit all vulnerable people with substance use disorders and other groups at need", emphasized Mr. Yusup Veliyev,Chief Narcologist of the Ministry of Health and Medical Industry, during welcome ceremony.

Highly qualified team of regional and national trainers trained a team of 12 national trainers - drug addiction specialists - on desirable interpersonal skills required for working with patients with substance use disorders. The participants explored that training provides a unique opportunity to establish specialized counselling service system based on the country's needs and positive family-oriented traditions, which require consistent capacity development of professional cadres and institutionalisation of standards and practices in health system.

The further steps on introducing UTC training package include refreshing training on all courses of basic level, credentialing examination to obtain International Certified Addiction Professional Level 1, and,  then, moving towards the advanced level training courses which are scheduled to start in April 2019.

TreatNet project is the flagship project of UNODC aimed at promoting access to drug dependence treatment, care and rehabilitation services based on scientific evidence, through worldwide advocacy, capacity building and expansion/development of drug treatment services.

Since 2009, TreatNet has been working with the Ministry of Health and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan, and other partners towards introduction of the evidence-based practices in the field of drug use prevention and treatment of drug dependence, as well as family-support services for children at risk.

The training was conducted within the framework of UNODC joint capacity building activity with Colombo Plan in the context of TreatNet, UNODC Global project. It is a part of introduction of the Universal Treatment Curriculum for Substance Use Disorders (UTC Training Package) developed by a team of experts through funding provided by the U.S. State Department Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL).

For more information:

UNODC ROCA on Twitter

UNODC in Central Asia on Facebook


For more information, please contact:
Ms. Annatach Mamedova

UNODC National Project Officer

Ashgabat, Turkmenistan
Tel: (993-12) 488380/88

E-mail: annatach.mamedova[at]un.org