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How can older people's mental health services in the UK respond to the escalating prevalence of alcohol misuse among older adults?

How can older people's mental health services in the UK respond to the escalating prevalence of... Purpose - There is growing statistical and research evidence to suggest that the prevalence of alcohol misuse is increasing among older adults in the UK. This has been an under-recognised problem, but is now a source of increasing concern for health and social care providers. Older adults with mental health problems have increased vulnerability to problematic alcohol use, and this is likely to have a significant impact on older people's mental health services (OPMHS). Design/methodology/approach - This paper discusses some of the problems facing OPMHS in relation to increasing alcohol misuse among services users. Findings - There is also evidence that alcohol misuse in older adults is often poorly identified and untreated within health and social care services including OPMHS. Use of an alcohol-screening tool as part of a health care assessment is an effective way to improve detection. This paper also reviews the use of alcohol screening tools in the detection of alcohol related illness among older adults with mental health problems and proposes a care pathway for the management of alcohol misuse in OPMHS. Originality/value - Current evidence indicates that the prevalence of alcohol misuse among older adults is increasing and is likely to rise further due to the reasons discussed in this paper. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Advances in Dual Diagnosis Pier Professional

How can older people's mental health services in the UK respond to the escalating prevalence of alcohol misuse among older adults?

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Publisher
Pier Professional
Copyright
Copyright © 2011 by Pier Professional Limited
ISSN
1757-0972
eISSN
2042-8324
DOI
10.1108/17570971111155586
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose - There is growing statistical and research evidence to suggest that the prevalence of alcohol misuse is increasing among older adults in the UK. This has been an under-recognised problem, but is now a source of increasing concern for health and social care providers. Older adults with mental health problems have increased vulnerability to problematic alcohol use, and this is likely to have a significant impact on older people's mental health services (OPMHS). Design/methodology/approach - This paper discusses some of the problems facing OPMHS in relation to increasing alcohol misuse among services users. Findings - There is also evidence that alcohol misuse in older adults is often poorly identified and untreated within health and social care services including OPMHS. Use of an alcohol-screening tool as part of a health care assessment is an effective way to improve detection. This paper also reviews the use of alcohol screening tools in the detection of alcohol related illness among older adults with mental health problems and proposes a care pathway for the management of alcohol misuse in OPMHS. Originality/value - Current evidence indicates that the prevalence of alcohol misuse among older adults is increasing and is likely to rise further due to the reasons discussed in this paper.

Journal

Advances in Dual DiagnosisPier Professional

Published: Jan 1, 2011

Keywords: Alcohol misuse

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