Alcohol screening and brief intervention among drug users in primary care: a discussion paper

New paper out now, here

Background Problem alcohol use is common among problem drug users (PDU) and associated with adverse health outcomes. Primary care has an important role in the overall stepped approach to alcohol treatment, especially screening and brief intervention (SBI). Aim To discuss three themes that emerged from an exploration of the literature on SBI for problem alcohol use in drug users attending primary care. Methods Material for this discussion paper was gathered from three biomedical databases (PubMed, PsycINFO and Cochrane library), conference proceedings and online resources of professional organisations or national health agencies. Results Themes discussed in this paper are: (a) the potential of primary care for delivery of alcohol SBIs to PDUs, (b) screening methods and (c) application of brief interventions to PDUs. Conclusions Although SBI improves health outcomes associated with problem alcohol use in the general population, further research is needed among high-risk patient groups, especially PDUs.

Integrative GP Research Group started in Dublin

How important is it to integrate research? Why do we need to integrate it at all? Well, because things are disintegrated!
This is the first blog post about the General Practice Research Group (GP), established on May 2nd, 2012 in Dublin, Ireland. It contains my musings about the first group meeting and research plans for future. I think I’m not capable of writing an exquisite research blog, but I will write about research because it consumes 80% of my waking hours.
The six of us met officially as a group on Wednesday. Finally! We made it and a new research group was born. We met to establish a research group which should be integrative. It means that we will work together to use our research for improving lives of people that we care about, patients, clients, participants… we call them different names depending on the situation.
Doing things together is much more fun than on our own. Especially if we talk about things that we are passionate about. And passion we have! It was clear in the lengthy discussions that we mean business. We spent about half of a day sunk in these talks and then I left.
After the meeting, all planned to go for a personalised sight-seeing tour around the UCD Belfield campus. In Walter’s words:

“Tour 5’ for the non-UCD people, which might involve a tour of the new(ish) Health Sciences Building, the (in)famous Belfield bar (home to the legendary Pre-Med class party of 1989) and the soccer pitch where the ‘Casual Heroes’ soccer team won division 3B of the ‘UCD Superleague’ in 1993.”