ENTER Conference 2021

in conjunction with

The LVR Hospital Essen and the University of Duisberg-Essen, Germany

Date: 15th September 2021

Venue: Online

Call for Abstracts


Conference Theme

Current developments in the care of persons with substance-related disorders: An update on interventions in substance use 2021


The last 10-20 years, have seen significant developments in the care of people experiencing substance related disorder with the development of manualised psychotherapeutic interventions based on cognitive-behavioural therapy, the availability of medications such as acamposate and naltrexone, as well as maintenance treatments such as methadone and buprenorphine. We have also seen greater consideration of comorbid mental health problems in the treatment plans for this group. Despite these improvements, major challenges exist for the treatment of persons experiencing substance related disorder. In the ENTER Conference 2021 we hope to explore:


  • The increase in new addictive substances (“legal highs”, Novel Psychotropic Substances (NPS) including new synthetic opioids. Discussion will centre upon whether these substances will replace traditional substance presentations seen historically in services. Whether these ‘novel’ substances will require a redirection in thinking on the risks of substance-use more into the direction of acute somatic complications? Whether legislation can have an impact on the availability of NPS?

  • The treatment gap regarding the percentage of persons with substance related disorders who are at a given point of time in treatment primarily addressing addictive disorders. Which measures are proven to reduce this treatment gap? Are the merging measures of eMental-Health a way to encounter people experiencing substance related disorders, especially those with no contact with the traditional addiction services? What has to be done to implement addiction services in prisons? Do minority and ethnic groups require more tailored treatment options?

  • Developments in psychosocial intervention for substance use.  A person's substance use is significantly influenced by social context. However, policies and research priorities on the area of substance use do not reflect this more complex view of substance use adequately. This is despite a long history that recognises the benefits of psychosocial approaches, services, and programs that recognize the social component of substance use and substance user recovery. These dynamic interventions can also play a significant role in supporting family members and creating a network to facilitate the recovery process. Community-based psychosocial programs provide a continuum of care ranging from outreach and low-threshold services for the hardest-to-reach groups of users (homeless, members of social minorities, etc.), to withdrawal and rehabilitation programmes, recovery programs, and integrated services, to self-help and peer support.

  • Developments in the biological aspects of the treatment of addictive disorders in recent years: the pros and cons of the administration of depot maintenance drugs for people experiencing opioid addiction? What are the prospects of deep brain stimulation for the treatment of addictive disorders?


We invite authors to submit papers with theoretical and conceptual reflections and presentations of good practice in biological, psychological, social and integrated interventions for substance use, with a particular focus on user- and community-oriented approaches, to encourage a lively discussion on recent developments in the field.

The deadline for submission of abstracts is April 30th, 2021. Abstracts should be submitted to: entermentalhealth@gmail.com on the abstract submission form located here.


We will then respond to every author around mid-June about the acceptance of the respective contributions.


Best regards,


Prof Marja Kaunonen


Head of Health Sciences

Faculty of Social Sciences

Tampere University

Chair, ENTER Mental Health



Prof Dr Norbert Scherbaum


Head of the Department of Addiction Medicine and Addictive Behaviour,

Head of the Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy,

LVR-Hospital Essen, University of Duisburg-Essen