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Health Educ Res. 2003 Feb;18(1):74-87.

One-year follow-up results of the STARS for Families alcohol prevention program.

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  • 1Center for Drug Prevention Research, University of North Florida, 4567 St Johns Bluff Road South, Jacksonville, FL 32224-2645, USA.


This study examined the 1-year follow-up effects of the STARS (Start Taking Alcohol Risks Seriously) for Families program, a 2-year preventive intervention based on a stage of acquisition model, and consisting of nurse consultations and parent materials. A randomized controlled trial was conducted, with participants receiving either the intervention or a minimal intervention control. Participants included a cohort of 650 sixth-grade students from two urban middle schools-one magnet (bused) and one neighborhood. Trained project staff administered questionnaires to students following a standardized protocol in the schools. For the magnet school sample, significantly fewer intervention students (5%) were planning to drink in the next 6 months than control students (18%), chi2 = 11.53, 1 d.f., P = 0.001. Magnet school intervention students also had less intentions to drink in the future, greater motivation to avoid drinking and less total alcohol risk than control students, Ps < 0.05. For the neighborhood school, intervention students (m = 7.90, SD = 1.87) had less total alcohol risk than control students (m = 8.42, SD = 1.83), F(1,205) = 4.09, P = 0.04. These findings suggest that a brief, stage and risk/protective factor tailored program holds promise for reducing risk for alcohol use among urban school youth 1 year after intervention, and has the unique advantage of greater 'transportability' over classroom-based prevention programs.

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