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Computer simulation suggests that health would improve and/or costs be reduced if on-line brief interventions and therapy were added to or replaced conventional alcohol-related health care; these results for the Netherlands are based on a simulation model applicable as an aid to national policymaking in other countries.
Instead of telling addiction treatment providers what to do to qualify for funding, the US state of Delaware set recruitment and engagement targets and largely left the methods up to the services. Result: more and more engaging treatment without stifling innovation.
STUDY 2004 PDF file 181Kb
Family check-up builds on teachers' abilities to identify problem pupils
Using teachers' ratings to target the families of high-risk pupils, a US study has shown that a few hours spent improving parental monitoring and response to childrens' behaviour can lead two years later to reductions in substance use.
Binge drinkers among young Swiss men being conscripted in to the army responded to around 16 minutes of alcohol advice by on average cutting their intake 20% more than recruits whose drinking was simply assessed, a rare demonstration of the impact of a brief intervention in an unselected population.
Compared to basic drug education, it should at least have moderated current use, but this attempt to deploy motivational interviewing as an across-the-board prevention strategy among college students in London neither did that, nor did it prevent non-users starting to use, negative findings which raise interesting questions.
US students who broke college drinking rules and were required to undertake an alcohol programme responded better to three hours of group motivational interviewing than six of alcohol education; enhanced confidence that they could resist risky drinking was the key. For colleges it offers an effective but economical response to problem drinkers.
Studies published in the mid-2000s confirm that counselling based on motivational interviewing helps heavy drinking US college students control their drinking and reduce related problems.
STUDY 2010 HTM file
Brief alcohol intervention for college drinkers: How brief is?
This US study found that in the short term, 50 minutes of motivational counselling with student drinkers was no more effective in reducing alcohol consumption than 10 minutes of motivational counselling.
STUDY 1999 PDF file 223Kb
Students respond to brief alcohol intervention
High risk US students selected on the basis of their drinking at school cut their drinking at college in response to a brief face-to-face motivational interview with individualised risk assessments.
Addressing the substance use promoting tendencies of the personality traits of London secondary school pupils at particular risk of substance misuse led to less intensive drinking six months later, and there was some support for the psychological mechanisms thought to underpin the intervention.
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