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New alcohol ‘early intervention’ service launches in Doncaster

A newly launched ‘early intervention’ service is aiming to help Doncaster people safely manage their drinking within safe limits to prevent it spiralling out of control.

The Alcohol Early Intervention and Outreach Team is targeting people who may be drinking more than usual perhaps caused by the pandemic impacting on their normal drinking patterns, people have often drunk more and earlier in the day than they would have done in a public house.

“It’s about education, not formal clinical treatment, giving people information so they can make healthy lifestyle choices” said Senior Case Manager, Frankee White, from Aspire Drug & Alcohol Services a partnership between The Alcohol and Drug Service (ADS) and Rotherham Doncaster and South Humber NHS Foundation Trust.

“We offer from 6 to 12 guided sessions, currently delivered confidentially over the internet or by telephone however we hope to provide some face-to-face sessions within the community later in the year. These sessions will help people understand how increased drinking affects the mind and body and ultimately lifestyle choices and abilities. We are focussing on those who perhaps wouldn’t normally use our services, who probably are quite high functioning holding down a job, have a home and supportive family and friends, but are finding that their alcohol consumption has been increasing. We want to help them manage their drinking within safe tolerances, so they don’t become dependent on alcohol”.

“Some people have long term health problems and don’t understand how alcohol can impact and amplify their condition or create associated health risks. Drinking more later in life can also cause problems, which we explain in our education sessions.”

Frankee is supported by Case Manager Alana Jury on the ‘pilot’ scheme, which is being match funded by Doncaster Council’s Public Health Department for an initial 12 months to assess its impact.

Current Government guidelines advise men and women not to regularly drink more than 14 alcohol units a week, though research suggest that many people do not always know how many units are in, say, a glass of wine or pint of beer.

Public Health England estimates that there are over 4,000 people who are dependent on alcohol here in Doncaster which is affecting their health and negative consequences to family.

Andy Collins, Public Health Lead for alcohol at Doncaster Council, said: “We are supporting this initiative so that people gain early recognition about their drinking levels and start to understand where it may become more entrenched and problematic, before it potentially reaches a reach a point where it becomes unmanageable”

To talk to a member of the team ring 01302 730956 and quote ‘early’. Or email: rdash.aspireaei@nhs.net

Left to right: Alana Jury and Frankee White
Left to right: Alana Jury and Frankee White