The effectiveness of a hospital-based intervention for patients with substance-use problems in the Western Cape
The original publication is available at:
Sorsdahl, K. et. al. 2012. The effectiveness of a hospital-based intervention for patients with substance-use problems in the Western Cape. South African Medical Journal, 102 (7):634-635, http://www.samj.org.za
ENGLISH ABSTRACT: District hospitals regularly experience a high incidence of substanceuse disorders, but rarely provide interventions. We describe the effectiveness of an intervention developed and implemented by a Western Cape hospital. Patients with probable substance use were referred to an on-site social worker for an alcohol, smoking and substance involvement screening test (ASSIST), a brief motivational intervention and referral to specialist care. At the 3-month followup, the ASSIST was re-administered telephonically. An intervention was received by 127 patients. A significant reduction in substance use was reported in 92 patients who completed a 3-month followup evaluation (p<0.001). Of the 60 patients referred to further care, half entered treatment. We conclude that, with minimal resourcing, it is feasible to administer a brief substance-use intervention for patients attending district hospitals.