Unit of competency details

CHCAOD513A - Provide relapse prevention strategies (Release 1)


Usage recommendation:
Is superseded by CHCAOD007 - Develop strategies for alcohol and other drugs relapse prevention and managementThis version was released in CHC Community Services Training Package release 2.0 and meets the requirements of the 2012 Standards for Training Packages. Significant changes to elements and performance criteria. New evidence requirements for assessment, including volume and frequency requirements. Significant change to knowledge evidence. 05/Aug/2015

ReleaseRelease date
1 1 (this release) 25/Mar/2011

Qualifications that include this unit

CodeSort Table listing Qualifications that include this unit by the Code columnTitleSort Table listing Qualifications that include this unit by the Title columnUsage RecommendationRelease
CHC50308 - Diploma of Community Services (Mental health)Diploma of Community Services (Mental health)Superseded
CHC50508 - Diploma of Leisure and HealthDiploma of Leisure and HealthSuperseded
CHC50212 - Diploma of Community Services (Alcohol and other drugs)Diploma of Community Services (Alcohol and other drugs)Superseded
CHC50408 - Diploma of Community Services (Alcohol, other drugs and mental health)Diploma of Community Services (Alcohol, other drugs and mental health)Superseded
CHC50312 - Diploma of Community Services (Mental health)Diploma of Community Services (Mental health)Superseded
CHC50208 - Diploma of Community Services (Alcohol and other drugs)Diploma of Community Services (Alcohol and other drugs)Superseded
CHC50512 - Diploma of Leisure and HealthDiploma of Leisure and HealthSuperseded
CHC50412 - Diploma of Community Services (Alcohol, other drugs and mental health)Diploma of Community Services (Alcohol, other drugs and mental health)Deleted1-2 
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SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 090513 Counselling  

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 090513 Counselling  02/Feb/2009 
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Modification History

Not Applicable

Unit Descriptor


This unit describes the knowledge and skills required to develop and deliver a range of relapse prevention strategies for people with alcohol and other drugs (AOD) issues

Application of the Unit


This unit applies to work with clients with AOD issues in a range of community sector work contexts

Licensing/Regulatory Information

Not Applicable


Not Applicable

Employability Skills Information

Employability Skills 

This unit contains Employability Skills

Elements and Performance Criteria Pre-Content

Elements define the essential outcomes of a unit of competency.

The Performance Criteria specify the level of performance required to demonstrate achievement of the Element. Terms in italics are elaborated in the Range Statement.

Elements and Performance Criteria



1. Determine relapse prevention strategies

1.1 Prepare client for the possibility of relapse as a common experience

1.2 Determine any previous relapse prevention strategies used by the client

1.3 Work with client to determine readiness for development of a relapse prevention plan 

1.4 Work with client to determine stakeholders  to be included in the relapse prevention process

1.5 Investigate a range of relapse prevention strategies 

1.6 Work with client to determine possible relapse issues

1.7 Work with client to determine strategies most suited to their unique situation

2. Develop relapse management plan

2.1 Explain the purpose of the planning process and discuss the different options  with client

2.2 Work with client to select most appropriate planning option

2.3 Conduct relapse management planning session in a manner that promotes client participation, fosters their strengths and respects their insights into their own situation, their knowledge and experiences

2.4 Work with client to identify contingency plans if difficulties are encountered

2.5 Clearly record relapse management planning activities

3. Report and document information

3.1 Document information about relapse prevention strategies according to organisation protocols

3.2 Observe privacy and confidentiality requirements when reporting feedback

3.3 Use appropriate terminology to document client response, outcomes and identified problems related to prevention strategies

Required Skills and Knowledge


This describes the essential skills and knowledge and their level required for this unit.

Essential knowledge :

The candidate must be able to demonstrate essential knowledge required to effectively do the task outlined in elements and performance criteria of this unit, manage the task and manage contingencies in the context of the identified work role

These include knowledge of:

  • Client-centred approach
  • Effects of alcohol and other drugs with a specific focus on use and dependence
  • Factors that influence substance use - including environmental, cultural, economic, individual etc that are risk factors for relapse
  • Assessing problems - prioritising/most pressing for client
  • Crisis management
  • Behaviour change, lapse and relapse and factors that support behaviour change or are road blocks/obstacles, such as social, physical and cultural factors
  • Pharmacotherapies and other therapies
  • Agencies suitable for referral

Essential skills :

It is critical that the candidate demonstrate the ability to:

  • Identify high risk situations
  • Use advanced communication skills effectively, including, for example:
  • Empathy
  • Reflective listening
  • Open ended questioning
  • Summarising
  • Apply advanced motivational interviewing skills
  • Apply relevant strategies that match the client's stage of change and enhance the client's self efficacy
  • Support client to develop skills in:
  • Problem solving
  • Goal setting
  • Coping
  • Self monitoring and management
  • Recognising and managing cravings
  • Cognitive restructuring

Evidence Guide


The evidence guide provides advice on assessment and must be read in conjunction with the Performance Criteria, Required Skills and Knowledge, the Range Statement and the Assessment Guidelines for this Training Package.

Critical aspects for assessment and evidence required to demonstrate this unit of competency :

  • The individual being assessed must provide evidence of specified essential knowledge as well as skills
  • This unit is best assessed on the job or in a simulated workplace under the normal range of conditions
  • Consistency in performance should consider the requirements of the particular workplace context

Access and equity considerations :

  • All workers in community services should be aware of access, equity and human rights issues in relation to their own area of work
  • All workers should develop their ability to work in a culturally diverse environment
  • In recognition of particular issues facing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, workers should be aware of cultural, historical and current issues impacting on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
  • Assessors and trainers must take into account relevant access and equity issues, in particular relating to factors impacting on Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander clients and communities

Context of and specific resources for assessment :

  • This unit can be assessed independently, however holistic assessment practice with other community services units of competency is encouraged
  • Resources required for assessment of this unit include access to a workplace or simulated workplace where assessment may occur

Method of assessment :

  • In cases where the learner does not have the opportunity to cover all relevant aspects in the work environment, the remainder should be assessed through realistic simulations, projects, previous relevant experience or oral questioning on 'What if?' scenarios
  • Assessment of this unit of competence will usually include observation of processes and procedures, oral and/or written questioning on Essential knowledge and skills and consideration of required attitudes
  • Where performance is not directly observed and/or is required to be demonstrated over a 'period of time' and/or in a 'number of locations', any evidence should be authenticated by colleagues, supervisors, clients or other appropriate persons

Range Statement


The Range Statement relates to the unit of competency as a whole. It allows for different work environments and situations that may affect performance. Add any essential operating conditions that may be present with training and assessment depending on the work situation, needs of the candidate, accessibility of the item, and local industry and regional contexts.

Development of a relapse prevention plan includes :

  • Working on relapse plan with the client as a preventative strategy
  • Initiating relapse planning as soon as client agrees to participate in AOD intervention
  • Review of relapse plan if and when relapse occurs
  • Identifying factors that may trigger relapse
  • Discussing risk of relapse as an experience rather than a failure
  • Ensuring client is provided with relevant contacts, such as telephone counselling helpline
  • Reaching agreement with client about availability of support in responding to potential or actual relapse

Stakeholders may include :

  • Client with insight into their own situation
  • Family, friends, relatives as identified by the client
  • Carer/s where appropriate, for example for people with disabilities
  • Relevant service providers
  • Support groups
  • Employers

Planning options may include :

  • Development of formal relapse plan
  • Informal ongoing planning
  • Working with client only
  • Involving other stakeholders in planning process

Range of relapse prevention strategies may include but are not limited to :

  • Specific strategies to avoid situations and cues / triggers identified by client, such as:
  • situations or companions associated with alcohol or drug use
  • sources of stress, such as aspects of job, family relationships, social pressures, financial issues
  • Strategies to develop client's ability to deal with identified situations and triggers
  • Strategies to deal with lack of support from partners or other people of significance, where appropriate
  • Inclusion of people of significance in planning and implementation of relapse strategies
  • Strategies to identify issues and reinforce positive choices, such as:
  • putting into writing thoughts and feelings
  • keeping behavioural record/diary of situations and triggers that put the client at risk
  • recording difficult choice situations, option taken and outcomes
  • Suggestions from various stakeholders, including experienced support workers and counsellors, which have been found to work in other situations and may be appropriate for the client's situation

Unit Sector(s)

Not Applicable