Table of Contents
ISRN Emergency Medicine
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 837380, 10 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.5402/2012/837380
Review Article

Attitudes and Beliefs towards Patients with Hazardous Alcohol Use: A Systematic Review

1Department of Pediatrics, Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada T6G 1C9
2Department of Psychology, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada T6G 2E9
3Department of Emergency Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada T6G 2T4
4Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada T6G 2R7
5School of Public Health, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada T6G 1C9
6Department of Pediatrics, Edmonton Clinic Health Academy (ECHA), 11405-87 Avenue, Edmonton, AB, Canada T6G 1C9

Received 20 September 2012; Accepted 4 November 2012

Academic Editors: C. Arreola-Risa, C. Damsa, and W. Ryotaro

Copyright © 2012 Neelam Mabood et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Objective. To describe emergency department (ED) staff attitudes and beliefs towards patients presenting with hazardous alcohol use and their clinical management. Methods. A search of MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL, SCOPUS from 1990 to 2010, and reference lists from included studies was conducted. Two reviewers independently screened for inclusion and assessed study quality. One reviewer extracted the data and a second checked for completeness and accuracy. Results. Among nine studies four reported varied beliefs on whether screening was worthwhile for identifying hazardous alcohol use (physicians: 42%–88%; nurses: 50%–100%). Physicians in three studies were divided on intervention provision (32%–54% in support of intervention provision) as were nurses in two studies (39% and 64% nurses in support of intervention provision). Referral for treatment was identified in two studies as an important part of ED management (physicians: 62% and 97%; nurses: 95%). Other attitudes and beliefs identified across the studies included concern that asking about alcohol consumption would be seen as obtrusive or offensive, and a perceived lack of time and resources available for providing care and referrals. Conclusions. ED staff had varying attitudes towards ED management of patients with hazardous alcohol use. Investigations into improving clinical care for hazardous alcohol use are needed to optimize ED management for these patients.