Early intervention and support can make a real difference to alcohol-related harm, if community nurses and other health professionals have the knowledge, skills and confidence required to do this effectively.1-4
Recently published alcohol guidelines recommend a review of alcohol-related health risks and the need to provide greater clarity to promote public understanding and communication.5
Furthermore, a recent report from the NHS Future Forum advocates that health professionals embrace every contact opportunity to discuss the four main lifestyle risk factors of diet, physical activity, tobacco and alcohol use in their day-to-day work with patients.
This should be the case whatever their specialty or purpose of the contact, in order to improve physical health and well-being and to achieve better outcomes.6
A wealth of literature exists around delivery of alcohol brief interventions.3,7-9 Studies have focused on GPs and practice nurses, but recently health visitors, school nurses and nursery nurses have been included.4 Efficacy is increased if barriers to implementation are addressed. 1,2,4,7,10