The Division of Addiction Services (DAS) was created by law in 1989 (P.L. 1989, c. 51; N.J.S.A. 26:2BB-5 and 6), combining the previously created Division of Narcotic and Drug Abuse Control (P.L. 1969, c. 152; N.J.S.A. 26:2G-1), and Division of Alcoholism (P.L. 1975, c. 305; N.J.S.A. 26:2B-9), both in the Department of Health and Senior Services. Effective April 5, 2004, DAS was transferred from the Department of Health and Senior Services to the Department of Human Services by Reorganization Plan 002-2004 (36 N.J.R. 1149(a)). DAS merged with the Division of Mental Health Services into the Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services in July 2010.
The Division develops and supports community-based prevention, education and early intervention services to at-risk populations that will enhance their knowledge and skills to promote healthy life choices using a three-tiered approach:
- Universal: where media messages and written information is provided Statewide to all citizens through contracts and resource centers in every county;
- Selective: where programs of information and skill development are provided to groups of individuals at some risk; and
- Indicated: where programs of information, skill development and behavioral change are promoted to identify individuals most at risk.
The Division also supports and monitors a wide variety of substance abuse treatment services and treatment providers designed to reduce the misuse of alcohol and other drugs through effective evidence-based treatment, such as the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) Patient Placement Criteria. DAS plans and coordinates addiction treatment services for the 21 counties of New Jersey.