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Emerg Med Australas. 2008 Apr;20(2):129-35. doi: 10.1111/j.1742-6723.2007.01002.x.

Emergency clinician-delivered screening and intervention for high-risk alcohol use: a qualitative analysis.

Author information

1
Emergency Practice Innovation Centre, Department of Emergency Medicine, St Vincent's Health, Victoria, Australia. tracey.weiland@svhm.org.au

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

To evaluate qualitative feedback from patients who received opportunistic screening and brief intervention for harmful alcohol use during an ED attendance; to evaluate emergency staff attitudes to performing alcohol screening and delivering opportunistic brief intervention; and to document process issues associated with the introduction of routine clinician-initiated opportunistic screening and training and administration of brief intervention.

METHODS:

Structured and semi-structured interviews with emergency staff and recipients of brief intervention.

RESULTS:

Sixty-nine patients were interviewed 3 months after an ED attendance where they received emergency clinician-delivered brief intervention for high-risk alcohol use. Twenty-two (32%; 95% CI 21-43%) reported a positive effect of brief intervention on thoughts or behaviour, but 29% (95% CI 18-40%) felt the intervention was not relevant for them or could not recall it. Four people (6%; 95% CI 1-12%) felt confronted or embarrassed, and 17 (25%; 95% CI 15-36%) felt timing or delivery could be improved. Staff had a positive attitude to delivering brief intervention, but nominated lack of time as the main barrier. Fourteen of 15 staff felt brief intervention should become routine in emergency care.

CONCLUSION:

Emergency clinicians can be trained to provide brief intervention for high-risk alcohol in an ED. The use of emergency clinician brief intervention is acceptable to most staff and patients.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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