Models of Care for Alcohol Misusers

Models of Care for Alcohol Misusers (Department of Health and National
Treatment Agency for Substance Misuse 2006) provided practice guidance for
local health organisations and their partners in the commissioning and provision of
assessments, interventions and treatment of adults who misuse alcohol. The guidance
acknowledged the impact of parental alcohol misuse on children. This is clearly
stated in the foreword by the then chief medical officer, Sir Liam Donaldson:
There is no doubt that alcohol misuse is associated with a wide range of problems,
including physical health problems such as cancer and heart disease; offending
behaviours, not least domestic violence; suicide and deliberate self-harm; child
abuse and child neglect; mental health problems which co-exist with alcohol
misuse; and social problems such as homelessness.
(Department of Health and National Treatment Agency for Substance Misuse
2006, p.5)

However, the recommendations relating to screening and early assessments did
not include the children of parents who misuse alcohol, although the guidance did
recommend that comprehensive risk assessments should be targeted at, among others,
users with complex needs including women who are pregnant or have children ‘at
risk’. The Department of Health has recently trialled a range of alcohol screening
and brief intervention approaches to evaluate their delivery, effectiveness and costeffectiveness (Screening and Intervention Programme for Sensible Drinking (SIPS)

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