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Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs

The Pennsylvania Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs (DDAP) became a standalone entity in 2012 after it separated from the Department of Health.

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It is designed to offer information, support, and training for laypersons, health care professionals, and people with substance use disorders.

Pennsylvania’s DDAP offers an extensive array of services that can be accessed on its website. Services include treatment provider locators, licensing information for professionals, and informational publications.

In addition, several departments work through DDAP to coordinate and provide services throughout the state. These services are focused on substance abuse prevention, treatment, and education.


The Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs (DDAP) wasn’t always its own department. It was initially included under the umbrella of the PA Department of Health. In 2012, it became its own department.

The state of Pennsylvania wanted to provide education, treatment, and intervention programs to reduce drug abuse in the state.

DDAP is responsible for the oversight, the management, and the development of substance abuse intervention and prevention services throughout Pennsylvania. Its mission is to coordinate, engage, and lead Pennsylvania’s effort to reduce the abuse of (and resulting addiction to) drugs, alcohol, and gambling. DDAP provides numerous services with this mission in mind.

The Pennsylvania Advisory Council on Drug and Alcohol Abuse

One of the services provided by PA’s DDAP is advising the governor and the secretary of DDAP on issues surrounding drug and alcohol abuse in the state. The Pennsylvania Advisory Council on Drug and Alcohol Abuse performs this function.

Council members come from a variety of backgrounds. They must either:

  • Have experience or significant training in drug and alcohol prevention, treatment, rehabilitation, or enforcement.
  • Have a previous history of alcohol or drug dependency.
  • Have no connection or experience in prevention, intervention, treatment, rehabilitation, or enforcement.
  • Be a member of the general public.
  • Be representative of all areas of Pennsylvania.

The idea is to have specialists and laypersons on the council to be representative of the state as a whole.

The Parent Panel Advisory Council (PPAC)

The Parent Panel Advisory Council (PPAC) is a forum for parents. It addresses family and community access to services and supports relating to substance use disorders throughout the state of Pennsylvania.

PPAC is made up of people from all regions of Pennsylvania who are parents of children with substance use disorders.

PPAC can make recommendations to the Pennsylvania Health and Human Services Committee or DDAP to enhance and facilitate access to treatment and information services within the state. The members are appointed by the secretary of DDAP.

A Standing Order for Naloxone

This medication that is classified as an opioid antagonist. Naloxone reverses the effects of opioid overdose.

The Secretary of Health signed a standing order for prescriptions of naloxone to the general public and first responders. People can obtain the drug at local pharmacies.

In addition, DDAP offers training in the administration of naloxone at several sites.

Drug Take-Back Program

DDAP offers a search engine for individuals to locate where they can drop off unused prescriptions for proper disposal. You can enter your ZIP code or county in the search field and find local prescription take-back sites.

Drug and Alcohol Referral Tool (DART) and Treatment Provider Search Engine

DDAP also provides a drug and alcohol referral tool (DART) for people who need help themselves or to help someone else with a drug or alcohol problem. You simply fill out a questionnaire, and the treatment provider search engine generates referrals that fit your situation.

If you are looking for specific treatment provider, the DDAP site provides a treatment provider search engine that allows you to search for treatment providers in your county or by ZIP code.

List of Sources and Organizations

DDAP provides links to numerous sources that can assist with substance abuse treatment. These include:

  • Various local and national organizations or support services that are involved in treatment or provide information about substance abuse.
  • Listings of general support groups.
  • Information and materials for people interested in learning about substance abuse and addiction treatment.
  • Approved trainings for health care providers and educators.

Professional Resources

DDAP also provides numerous resources for professionals, including:

  • Information regarding the American Society of Addiction Medicine’s (ASAM) guidelines or treatment as well as training sponsored by ASAM.
  • Information on licensing and substance abuse treatment.
  • Specialized information for prescribers.
  • Information about gambling addictions.
  • A list of drug and alcohol abuse treatment providers in the area.


Finally, DDAP offers numerous publications that can be accessed by laypersons and health care professionals alike. These publications cover a wide variety of topics that range from the reports and goals associated with DDAP to informational materials and training manuals.

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