'DrinkThink' alcohol screening and brief intervention for young people: a qualitative evaluation of training and implementation

J. Derges*, J. Kidger, F. Fox, R. Campbell, E. Kaner, G. Taylor, Celia McMahon, L. Reeves, M. Hickman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
352 Downloads (Pure)


Background Alcohol Screening and Brief Intervention (ASBI) helps reduce risky drinking in adults, but less is known about its effectiveness with young people. This article explores implementation of DrinkThink, an ASBI co-produced with young people, by health, youth and social care professionals trained in its delivery. Methods A qualitative evaluation was conducted using focus groups with 33 staff trained to deliver DrinkThink, and eight interviews with trained participants and service managers. These were recorded, transcribed and a thematic analysis undertaken. Results DrinkThink was not delivered fully by health, youth or social care agencies. The reasons for this varied by setting but included: the training staff received, a working culture that was ill-suited to the intervention, staff attitudes towards alcohol which prioritized other health problems presented by young people, over alcohol use. Conclusions Implementation was limited because staff had not been involved in the design and planning of DrinkThink. Staffs' perceptions of alcohol problems in young people and the diverse cultures in which they work were subsequently not accounted for in the design. Co-producing youth focused ASBIs with the professionals expected to deliver them, and the young people whom they target, may ensure greater success in integrating them into working practice.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberfdx090
Pages (from-to)381-388
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Public Health (United Kingdom)
Issue number2
Early online date9 Aug 2017
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2018


  • alcohol screening and brief intervention
  • co-production
  • facilitators and barriers
  • implementation


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