Inspiration: Co-designing an approach to support people with their alcohol consumption

Inspiration: Co-designing an approach to support people with their alcohol consumption

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Organisation: Health Innovation Network South London


The aim of this project is improve the identification of individuals at risk of alcohol related harm in general practice and support them to make positive changes that could impact on other areas of their health.

This project covers all south London boroughs.

Brief Summary

I became a Darzi Fellow in September 2014. My background is in A&E nursing, and I am a Research assistant for the Critical Care group at the University of Oxford where my work focuses on improving the identification of at risk and deteriorating inpatients.

My project is about improving the delivery and reporting of Alcohol Identification and Brief Advice in general practice by translating best evidence-based approaches into clinical practice.

I am working closely with a few general practices across several boroughs in South London. Through observation of current practice and facilitation of workshops, specific barriers to IBA delivery are being identified and prioritised. Using rapid iterative change approaches, aspects of IBA delivery that are currently identified by primary care staff as sub-optimal are being developed. The measurement of changes and the subsequent effects are being made throughout this project.

The process aims to help build a network of interested primary care practice staff who would guide the on-going development of the South London Alcohol IBA Standard, and provide clinical input into the development of innovative solutions that incorporate technology into the delivery and reporting of IBA.

Working alongside the CLAHRC (Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care) Alcohol theme, the project will also explore how technology can be harnessed to improve this aspect of preventative health care. The team are looking into designing an ‘app’ that incorporates AUDIT- C questions with brief advice so that users can easily understand the effect of the alcohol they are consuming. My view is that this ‘intervention’ could be promoted by general practice staff when people have their NHS Check, or new patient check.

I am aiming for my project to set up a model of best clinical practice that will help sustain and improve both the delivery and reporting of alcohol screening in general practice despite the decommissioning of the Alcohol DES from April 2015.

This project is ongoing and due to be completed by September 2015. It is part of the Darzi Fellowship programme, and therefore will be continuously monitored and will have a final assessment.

Area of work

In relation to the four foundations of our declaration, this project aims to:

  • Care is about me
  • Make London healthier and happier

Service user involvement?

The project aims to deliver a product designed by people receiving care and staff.

Advice for others

Always check the evidence when scoping the project.
Embed innovations into existing clinical practice in order for them to be sustainable.

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