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Screening and brief intervention delivery in the workplace to reduce alcohol-related harm : a pilot randomized controlled trial

Watson, Hazel and Godfrey, Christine and McFadyen, Angus and McArthur, Katherine and Stevenson, Marisa and Holloway, Aisha (2015) Screening and brief intervention delivery in the workplace to reduce alcohol-related harm : a pilot randomized controlled trial. International Journal of Nursing Studies, 52 (1). pp. 39-48. ISSN 0020-7489

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Aim: To explore the feasibility and cost effectiveness of screening and delivery of a brief intervention for hazardous drinking employees. Methods: A pilot randomised controlled trial of a brief intervention delivered by an Occupational Health nurse versus no delivery of brief intervention (control group) conducted in a Local Authority Council (LCA) in the United Kingdom. Changes in quality of life and economic indicators were measured by the EQ-5D. Results: 627 employees were screened of whom 163 (26.01%) fulfilled the inclusion criteria with a total of 57 (35%) agreeing to participate. No significant differences were found between the groups for baseline demographics or levels/patterns of alcohol consumption. A statistically significant effect was found in the mean AUDIT scores over time (F = 8.96, p = 0.004) but not for group (F = 0.017, p = 0.896), and no significant interaction was found (F = 0.148, p = 0.702). The cost of each intervention was calculated at £12.48, the difference in service costs was calculated at £344.50 per person; that is there was a net saving of health and other care costs in the intervention group compared to the control group. The QALYs fell in both intervention and control groups, the difference −0.002 − (−0.010) yields a net advantage of the intervention of 0.008 QALYs. Conclusion: The main results from this pilot study suggest that alcohol brief interventions delivered in the workplace may offer the potential to reduce alcohol-related harm and save public sector resources. A fully powered multi-centre trial is warranted to contribute to the current evidence base and explore further the potential of alcohol brief interventions in the workplace. In a full trial the recruitment method may need to be re-considered.