Teaching internal medicine resident physicians about alcoholics anonymous: A pilot study of an educational intervention

Adam J. Rose*, Melissa R. Stein, Julia H. Arnsten, Richard Saitz

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations

Abstract

Greater physician confidence in treating alcoholism is associated with a higher frequency of referring alcoholic patients for treatment, but many physicians have limited experience with Alcoholics Anonymous. We implemented a brief, didactic and experiential educational intervention about AA and evaluated its effect on knowledge and attitudes, using a before-after repeated measures study design. Thirty-six first-year internal medicine resident physicians received an educational intervention, which consisted of a 45-minute lecture about AA, a visit to an AA meeting, and a 30-minute debriefing session the next day. Residents' knowledge and attitudes were assessed by a brief written anonymous survey before and after the educational intervention. Residents reported increases in self-perceived knowledge about AA and had more favorable attitudes towards AA after the intervention. Our pilot study shows that a brief, didactic and experiential course can improve physician knowledge and attitudes about AA, and holds promise for improving physician interface with this commonly used intervention.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)5-11
Number of pages7
JournalSubstance Abuse
Volume27
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 23 Oct 2006
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Adam J. Rose is affiliated with the Section of General Internal Medicine & Boston University School of Medicine, and Boston Veterans Administration Medical Center, Boston, MA. Melissa R. Stein and Julia H. Arnsten are affiliated with the Division of General Internal Medicine, and the Division of Substance Abuse, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY. Richard Saitz is affiliated with the Section of General Internal Medicine & Boston University School of Medicine, Clinical Addiction Research and Education Unit, Boston Medical Center, and Youth Alcohol Prevention Center and also the Department of Epidemiology, Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, MA. Address correspondence to: Adam J. Rose, MD, Section of General Internal Medicine, Boston Medical Center, 91 East Concord Street, Suite 200, Boston, MA 02118-2644 (E-mail: adamrose@bu.edu). The authors thank the subjects for their enthusiastic participation in this study. This research was supported in part by grants R25 DA13582 (PI: J. Samet) and R25 DA15302 (PI: J. Arnsten) from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), and by the Department of Veterans Affairs Office of Academic Affairs. No relevant conflicts of interest exist in relation to this work.

Keywords

  • Alcohol dependence
  • Alcoholics Anonymous
  • Housestaff
  • Internal medicine
  • Medical education

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