This site is intended for health professionals only

Doctors to question patients over alcohol consumption

3 June 2010

Share this article

Doctors are to grill patients on their alcohol consumption as part of a move to tackle the UK’s binge-drinking culture, it has been revealed.

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) said it had issued doctors with 10 “alcohol screening” questions to ask in a number of scenarios, including: when a patient joins a surgery; when prescriptions are being reviewed; and when people attend accident and emergency departments.

Children as young as 10 who are thought to be drinking alcohol should also be questioned and offered advice or referred to social or mental health care services, officials said.

The quiz focuses on how often and how much alcohol the patient consumes, and whether drinkers feel remorse after overindulging.

NICE estimates that around 10 million people are putting their health in danger through excessive drinking.

Copyright © Press Association 2010

National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence