New NIAAA site helps clinicians navigate alcohol and patient health
May 10, 2022
A new online resource will help healthcare professionals and practices improve care for people whose alcohol consumption may be impacting their health. Recognizing alcohol’s contribution to over 200 diseases and conditions will improve clinicians’ ability to serve their patients. The Healthcare Professional’s Core Resource on Alcohol was developed by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), part of the National Institutes of Health.
“Our hope is that the core resource will become a one-stop center for information and resources to help healthcare professionals provide evidence-based care by understanding that alcohol can exacerbate a broad range of health conditions,” said NIAAA Director George F. Koob, Ph.D. “The core resource also equips healthcare professionals to address alcohol misuse.”
Created with busy clinicians in mind, the core resource is built around 14 user-friendly, practical overviews designed to inform clinicians about alcohol and its interactions in the clinical setting and overcome known barriers to better care for patients whose alcohol consumption is affecting their health. Topics include:
- Foundational knowledge for understanding alcohol-related problems (4 articles)
- Clinical impacts of alcohol on a broad range of health conditions (4 articles)
- Strategies for prevention and treatment of alcohol problems (5 articles)
- How to “put it all together” to promote practice change (1 article)
More than 70 physicians, clinical psychologists, and basic and clinical alcohol researchers contributed to the articles, which offer more than 10 hours of free continuing education (CME/CE) credit for physicians, physician assistants, nurses, psychologists, and pharmacists.
“A key goal of the core resource is to help healthcare professionals and practices overcome known obstacles to care when alcohol consumption affects their patients’ health,” said Dr. Laura Kwako, Program Director of NIAAA’s health services portfolio, licensed clinical psychologist, and co-developer of the core. “The core resource provides critical information about alcohol and its effects and encourages clinicians to conduct alcohol screening and brief interventions and provides information about options for evidence-based treatment.”
Beyond the 14 articles, an Additional Links for Patient Care section offers helpful resources for primary care as well as hepatology, emergency care, obstetrics, oncology, pain management, pediatric, and geriatric specialists, therapists, and pharmacists. Moreover, for further reading and viewing, the core resource includes review articles on diverse topics from NIAAA’s scientific journal, Alcohol Research: Current Reviews, as well as videos by Dr. Koob and other NIAAA staff and grantees on topics such as the cycle of alcohol addiction, health disparities, and stress and relapse.