Measuring change from alcohol brief interventions: development of an international consensus core outcome set: full report

Gillian W. Shorter, Nick Heather, Jeremy W. Bray, Anne H. Berman, Emma L. Giles, Mike Clarke, Carolina Barbosa, Amy J. O'Donnell, Aisha Holloway, Dorothy Newbury-Birch

Research output: Book/ReportCommissioned report

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• Alcohol brief interventions (ABIs) are used to address unhealthy alcohol use in emergency departments, hospital wards, online, criminal justice settings, drug treatment, workplaces,primary care, and a range of other settings.
• High quality reviews provide some evidence of the efficacy and effectiveness of ABI in these settings. However, the range of outcomes which are variably measured and reported in efficacy and effectiveness studies makes it difficult to bring the evidence together for a stronger, moreinclusive review and estimation of effect.
• The COMET Initiative developed a method to create a Core Outcome Set or minimum data standard for trials in a particular health setting. Core Outcome Sets in other healthcare settings(e.g. Rheumatology) have standardised outcomes, reduced selective reporting, made it easier for researchers to decide on and justify outcomes, and reduced research waste.
• We used the COMET Initiative method to create a Core Outcome Set for ABI trials for those aged16 or over, with unhealthy alcohol use, who are not seeking formal alcohol treatment in all settings (such as workplaces, colleges/universities, criminal justice, online, apps, primary care,other healthcare settings). This is the minimum data standard for all efficacy and effectiveness trials. Other outcomes can be measured too alongside reporting the 10 core outcomes below.• We performed: (1) a systematic review of the literature to identify outcomes used in efficacy and effectiveness trials of ABIs and how these were measured, (2) an e-Delphi prioritisation exercise to rank the importance of these outcomes for inclusion on all trials of ABIs, and (3) a consensus meeting of experts from a range of stakeholder groups to identify the final set.

Original languageEnglish
PublisherAlcohol Change UK
Commissioning bodyAlcohol Change UK
Number of pages65
Publication statusPublished - 03 Jan 2023


  • alcohol
  • alcohol brief interventions
  • core outcome set
  • minimum data standard
  • consensus methods
  • delphi
  • systematic review
  • consensus meeting
  • psychometrics
  • measurement


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