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Home > Alcohol treatment matrix cell C1: Management/supervision - screening and brief intervention.

Drug and Alcohol Findings. (2020) Alcohol treatment matrix cell C1: Management/supervision - screening and brief intervention. Drug and Alcohol Findings Alcohol Treatment Matrix .

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URL: https://findings.org.uk/PHP/dl.php?file=Matrix/Alc...


The Alcohol Treatment Matrix is concerned with the treatment of alcohol-related problems among adults (another deals with drug-related problems). It maps the treatment universe and for each sub-territory (a cell) lists the most important UK-relevant research and guidance. Across the top, columns move from specific interventions through how their impacts are affected by the widening contexts of practitioners, management, the organisation, and whole local area treatment systems. Down the rows are the major intervention types implemented at these levels. Inside each cell is our pick of the most important documents relevant to the impact of that intervention type at that contextual level.

What is cell C1 about?

In contrast to treatment, screening and brief interventions are usually seen as public health measures. Rather than narrowing in on dependent individuals or just those seeking help, the aim is to reduce alcohol-related harm across a whole population – including those unaware of or unconcerned about their risky drinking. Screening questions aim to spot drinkers at risk of or already experiencing alcohol-related harm when for some other purpose they come contact services whose primary remit is not substance use. In studies, the typical response to those who score in at-risk zones is from five minutes to half an hour of advice, counselling and/or information aiming to moderate their drinking or its consequences, delivered not by alcohol specialists, but by the worker the drinker came into contact with – the ‘brief intervention’. Click here for more on typically studied screening and brief intervention activities.

This cell is not about the content of these interventions (for which see cell A1), but how implementation and impact are affected by support from the top and the management functions of selecting, training and managing staff and shaping the intervention programme. Management impetus is crucial because these procedures are usually implemented by practitioners (subjects of cell B1) who see neither non-dependent drinking nor public (as opposed to individual) health as core business. Enabling and persuading them to commit to screening and brief intervention is seen as the key task by people convinced that – if only they weren’t undermined by typically poor implementation – these programmes would fulfil their promise to improve public health.

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