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Unmet needs and service gaps

Background papers: Lifestyle and wider determinants :: Alcohol [Update in progress] :: Unmet needs and service gaps

Self Assessment against the NICE Guidance PH24[1] identified the following gaps:

Whilst some training has been delivered it is unclear if NHS professionals routinely carry out alcohol screening as an integral part of practice. NICE recommend that discussions take place during new patient registrations, when screening for other conditions and when managing chronic disease or carrying out a medicine review. These discussions should also take place when promoting sexual health, when seeing someone for an antenatal appointment and when treating minor injuries. A process is required to ensure this can be effectively monitored and reviewed by Public Health to ensure priority target groups (especially relevant for cancer, gastro and CVD services (notably hypertension and stroke) are receiving Indentification and Brief Advice (IBA).

Post-treatment and wrap-around provision is currently under-resourced. Future commissioning of services should follow the payment by results key outcomes to improve recovery.

Alcohol IBA and referral to treatment services is not routinely undertaken by all criminal justice agencies. Offenders drinking at hazardous/harmful levels may not be routinely identified and opportunities for referral to treatment may be missing.

Dual diagnosis services are also currently under-resourced for the level of need.


[1]   National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence. Alcohol-use disorders - preventing the development of harzardous and harmful drinking 2010;