Send to

Choose Destination
Br J Nurs. 2014 Jun 12-25;23(11):574-80.

Effectiveness of alcohol brief interventions in general practice.

Author information

Staff Nurse, St George’s Hospital NHS Trust, London.
Lecturer, Florence Nightingale School of Nursing and Midwifery, King’s College London.


Harmful levels of alcohol consumption are a longstanding but continually growing health concern affecting individuals, and consequently populations. Through personalised advice, alcohol brief interventions (ABIs) target drinking habits, which are deemed damaging to health. They are not targeted at dependent drinkers for whom a more intensive and specialist service would be better suited. In response to recent shifts in public-health strategy away from ABIs, and the publication of new trials into their effectiveness, this article evaluates the value of ABIs through the review of eleven relevant studies. Findings suggest that hazardous drinkers did reduce their drinking patterns following ABI, but not more so than control participants who were given standard treatment. The evolution of standard treatment to include thorough screening, non-personalised advice and sometimes literature on alcohol intake delivers an intervention, that is effective in reducing drinking. Therefore, future research and practice should focus on screening methods and quality of standard care rather than on brief interventions.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Atypon
Loading ...
Support Center