Researchers did this study to assess the feasibility and acceptability of screening attendees at SHC for alcohol misuse and delivering a brief intervention (BI). The secondary objective was to explore the effect of this BI on drinking and sexual behavior.
Participants were randomized to receive BI by a trained sexual health professional or a standard alcohol leaflet.
Results of six hundred and sixty-four participants screened, 215 were eligible for randomization, and 207 were included in the final analysis: 103 (BI) and 104 (UC). Follow-up rates were 54% and 47% at six weeks and six months, respectively. Both groups reduced alcohol consumption though the degree of change did not differ between them. There was some evidence of positive changes in sexual health risk in both groups. BI was delivered as intended, adding 5 minutes to the consultation, and staff feedback was positive.
The study concluded that alcohol misuse was common in SHC attendees. Systematic assessment and BI for alcohol misuse was feasible and acceptable to staff and patients. Identification and provision of standard information alone appeared to influence drinking and sexual behavior.