Management of chronic insomnia within primary care: CBTi, benzodiazepines and mental health care plans

Chronic insomnia presents complexities within general practice. This webinar will explore treatments and opportunities to ensure more patients have access to evidence-based treatments.


Clinical guidelines for the management of insomnia recommend Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for insomnia (CBTi) as first line treatment but many patients still receive hypnotic or sedative medications.

This webinar will describe the current context of insomnia management within general practice followed by an overview of the treatment options for patients with complex cases of chronic insomnia. This includes the management of long-term use of benzodiazepines, the implementation of CBTi in primary care, and the use of mental health treatment plans for the management of chronic insomnia by psychologists.

Firstly Professor Nick Zwar will present a primary care provider (GP) perspective about insomnia management, followed by Dr Erin Oldenhof who will discuss the management of long-term use of benzodiazepines in the context of insomnia management and Dr Alex Sweetman details the use of  CBTi in general practice. 

What are the 2-3 key points that the audience will take away after attending this webinar? 

CBTi is best practice for the management of chronic insomnia 
Benzodiazepine withdrawal is possible and can be facilitated in primary care 
GP Mental Health Treatment Plans may be used for the management of chronic insomnia 

Who would benefit from attending this webinar? 
General practitioners, general practice nurses, psychologists, sleep physicians, sleep trainees, sleep nurses and community pharmacists.


Professor Nick Zwar
Executive Dean of the Faculty, Faculty of Health Sciences and Medicine, Bond University

Professor Nick Zwar joined Bond University in 2019 as Executive Dean. Professor Zwar’s background is in medicine as a general practitioner and as a primary health care teacher and researcher. He was previously Dean of Medicine at University of Wollongong and prior to that Professor of General Practice and Deputy Dean (Education) at the University of New South Wales. He has a national and international reputation in health services research on prevention and management of chronic illness, with a focus on respiratory and cardiovascular diseases. Professor Zwar has led the development and contributed to several sets of Australian and international clinical practice guidelines and has over 200 peer-reviewed publications. Over the course of his academic career Nick has maintained involvement in clinical practice, working part time as a general practitioner for over 30 years.

Dr Erin Oldenhof

Psychologist and Benzodiazepine Withdrawal Counsellor at Reconnexion

Erin recently completed her Doctor of Psychology (Clinical) at Deakin University and has worked as a benzodiazepine withdrawal counsellor at Reconnexion for seven years. Her doctoral research focused on improving the management of long-term benzodiazepine use by enhancing the patient-centredness of current deprescribing practice. Erin continues research and advocacy to improve patient-centred care when deprescribing benzos/z-drugs, to reduce the potential harms associated with abrupt discontinuation.

Dr Alex Sweetman
Research Associate, Adelaide Institute for Sleep Health, Flinders University 

Dr Alex Sweetman completed his PhD at Flinders University in 2018 working on a multi-site randomised controlled trial, investigating the treatment of co-morbid insomnia and sleep apnoea. He is currently working as a Research Associate at Adelaide Institute for Sleep Health, Flinders University, investigating insomnia management in primary care settings.

Date: Tuesday, 14 September 2021 
Time: 3:30pm NSW, VIC, ACT, TAS, QLD
           3:00pm SA, NT
           1.30pm WA
           5.30pm NZ

This webinar is free for ASA members and open to non-members for a registration fee of $45. To register you will need to log in with your member details, or create an account on this website if you're not a member.

The webinar will be recorded and made available online afterwards - free to ASA members and for a small fee to others. By registering to attend, you are giving your permission to be recorded.

Please note:

  •  You will need to finalise your registration through the shopping cart, even if you are registering for free
  • Registrations closes three hours before (12:30pm AEST) the webinar starts and you will not be able to register after that
  • We will email you the webinar access details in the lead up to the webinar and again on the day of the webinar

Enquiries about this webinar should be directed to Asha Mohabir.

9/14/2021 3:30 PM - 5:00 PM
AUS Eastern Standard Time

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