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REVIEW 2014 HTM file
Interventions to reduce substance misuse among vulnerable young people
In this evidence update, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence assess new evidence relevant to its earlier public health guidance on interventions to reduce substance misuse among vulnerable young people.
Positive and significant effects observed on a range of drinking outcomes suggest that high-risk pupils may have benefited from the psychosocial intervention over standard drug education. But unclear whether the personality matching strategy was the effective component.
DOCUMENT 2017 HTM file
Drug misuse prevention: targeted interventions
From the UK’s health and social care advisory body, evidence-based guidance on how to improve the delivery of substance use prevention to at-risk children, young people, and adults.
One of the biggest strategic decisions facing prevention planners is whether to target high-risk groups or to prioritise universal programmes. This analysis won't decide the issue, but it does create an important new tool for comparing these strategies.
DOCUMENT 2011 HTM file
European drug prevention quality standards: a manual for prevention professionals
These first European standards on delivering high quality drug prevention may be assumed to be dry and technical, but could transform prevention practice if implemented, leading to fewer ineffective activities and an increased focus on approaches and interventions with realistic and achievable objectives.
REVIEW 2015 HTM file
Prevention of addictive behaviours
Based largely on existing reviews, this report for the German Federal Centre for Health Education comprehensively assesses substance use prevention approaches. Among its many conclusions are that approaches based solely on information provision are ineffective, in contrast to the more positive evidence for lifeskills and multi-component community programmes.
In these UK national prevention guidelines, experts prioritised population-wide changes like price rises and outlet restrictions which affect everyone, independent of the choices they make. But in England government prefers to target what they see as the troublesome minority, not the responsible majority.
DOCUMENT 1987 HTM file
High time for harm reduction
Impelled by the injecting-related AIDS crisis, Merseyside was where harm reduction in the UK first took root. From there in 1987 came this groundbreaking call for a turn away from what was seen as a failed attempt to prevent use to mitigating the harm. Expressed modestly as a “prudent” suggestion, with Russell Newcombe’s essay, “harm reduction” had come of age.
Synthesis of randomised trials finds worthwhile reductions in drinking after college students and others are simply very briefly informed how their drinking compares to population norms.
Brief interventions based on motivational interviewing typically incorporate feedback on the individual's risk and use level compared to the norm, but does this really help? A US college study found it did, the combination leading to greater drinking reductions than either on its own.
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