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Type: Journal article
Title: A randomized controlled trial of a brief intervention for illicit drugs linked to the Alcohol, Smoking and Substance Involvement Screening Test (ASSIST) in clients recruited from primary health-care settings in four countries
Author: Humeniuk, R.
Ali, R.
Babor, T.
Formigoni, M.
Boerngen de Lacerda, R.
Ling, W.
McRee, B.
Newcombe, D.
Pal, H.
Poznyak, V.
Simon, S.
Vendetti, J.
Citation: Addiction, 2012; 107(5):957-966
Publisher: Blackwell Publishing Ltd
Issue Date: 2012
ISSN: 0965-2140
Statement of
Rachel Humeniuk, Robert Ali, Thomas Babor, Maria Lucia O. Souza-Formigoni, Roseli Boerngen de Lacerda, Walter Ling, Bonnie McRee, David Newcombe, Hemraj Pal, Vladimir Poznyak, Sara Simon & Janice Vendetti
Abstract: Aims: This study evaluated the effectiveness of a brief intervention (BI) for illicit drugs (cannabis, cocaine, amphetamine-type stimulants and opioids) linked to the World Health Organization (WHO) Alcohol, Smoking and Substance Involvement Screening Test (ASSIST). The ASSIST screens for problem or risky use of 10 psychoactive substances, producing a score for each substance that falls into either a low-, moderate- or high-risk category. Design: Prospective, randomized controlled trial in which participants were either assigned to a 3-month waiting-list control condition or received brief motivational counselling lasting an average of 13.8 minutes for the drug receiving the highest ASSIST score. Setting: Primary health-care settings in four countries: Australia, Brazil, India and the United States. Participants: A total of 731 males and females scoring within the moderate-risk range of the ASSIST for cannabis, cocaine, amphetamine-type stimulants or opioids. Measurements: ASSIST-specific substance involvement scores for cannabis, stimulants or opioids and ASSIST total illicit substance involvement score at baseline and 3 months post-randomization. Findings: Omnibus analyses indicated that those receiving the BI had significantly reduced scores for all measures, compared with control participants. Country-specific analyses showed that, with the exception of the site in the United States, BI participants had significantly lower ASSIST total illicit substance involvement scores at follow-up compared with the control participants. The sites in India and Brazil demonstrated a very strong brief intervention effect for cannabis scores (P < 0.005 for both sites), as did the sites in Australia (P < 0.005) and Brazil (P < 0.01) for stimulant scores and the Indian site for opioid scores (P < 0.01). Conclusions: The Alcohol, Smoking and Substance Involvement Screening Test-linked brief intervention aimed at reducing illicit substance use and related risks is effective, at least in the short term, and the effect generalizes across countries.
Keywords: Amphetamine; ASSIST; brief intervention; cannabis; cocaine; illicit drugs; primary health care; opioids; randomized controlled trial; screening.
Rights: © 2011 The Authors
RMID: 0020118237
DOI: 10.1111/j.1360-0443.2011.03740.x
Appears in Collections:Pharmacology publications

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