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What are the safe drinking recommendations for men and women?

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17 December, 2012

Article: Bridgeman K et al (2012) Brief intervention for alcohol misuse. Nursing Times; 108; online issue.

Key points

  • Alcohol-related conditions cost the NHS over £2.7bn annually
  • In one study, one in four patients receiving brief intervention reduced their drinking significantly
  • Brief intervention works best at a “teachable moment” in a drinker’s life
  • Nurses are well placed to deliver brief intervention because of their rapport with patients
  • A simple framework can help nurses to structure interventions

Let’s discuss

  • What are the safe drinking recommendations for men and women?
  • What is the definition of hazardous drinking?
  • What are the health effects of excessive drinking?
  • How do you screen patients’ alcohol intake?
  • How would you carry out a brief intervention to address a patient’s drinking behaviour?
  • How effective are brief interventions?
  • Why are nurses best placed to deliver brief interventions?


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