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Already delivering alcohol advice to young people as part of the curriculum, did UK secondary schools see a reduction in risky drinking after supplementing it with brief counselling sessions?
HOT TOPIC 2018 HTM file
Computerised therapies: sacrificing effectiveness for wider access?
‘Hot topics’ offer background and analysis on important issues which sometimes generate heated debate. Among culturally accepted vehicles for delivering substance use interventions, computers, mobile phones and tablets are joining face-to-face work. Are we sacrificing effectiveness for convenience and economy?
HOT TOPIC 2016 HTM file
Motivational interviewing: fast and flexible counselling style
One of our hot topics offering background and analysis on important issues which sometimes generate heated debate. Introduces and evaluates the most influential approach in substance use counselling in Britain – one perhaps as widely misunderstood as it is practised. Great advantage is applicability to substance users from the risky to the dependent.
A computer-delivered brief intervention plus booster mailings increased the alcohol abstinence rate and improved pregnancy outcomes among risky drinking pregnant women recruited at a US antenatal clinic, though in this small pilot trial the results were not statistically significant.
Analysis of the only four randomised trials of brief alcohol interventions among 18–24-years-olds seen at emergency departments after getting drunk tentatively suggested that booster sessions or later advice are needed to reduce drinking.
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.
Despite a clear rationale for embedding brief interventions in community pharmacies, this UK trial found no evidence that they would reduce hazardous or harmful drinking.
Personalised, interactive, and motivational approaches dominate in this study of the effectiveness of single-session brief interventions for heavy-drinking college students. But, overall the effects of brief interventions remain modest in clinical terms.
The probation arm of the largest alcohol screening and brief intervention study yet conducted in Britain found that the proportion of offenders drinking at risky levels fell just as much after the most minimal of screening and intervention methods as after more sophisticated and longer alternatives.
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.
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