Web-based alcohol intervention for Māori university students: double-blind, multi-site randomized controlled trial

Kypri, Kypros, McCambridge, Jim, Vater, Tina, Bowe, Steven J., Saunders, John B., Cunningham, John A. and Horton, Nicholas J. (2013) Web-based alcohol intervention for Māori university students: double-blind, multi-site randomized controlled trial. Addiction, 108 2: 331-338. doi:10.1111/j.1360-0443.2012.04067.x

Author Kypri, Kypros
McCambridge, Jim
Vater, Tina
Bowe, Steven J.
Saunders, John B.
Cunningham, John A.
Horton, Nicholas J.
Title Web-based alcohol intervention for Māori university students: double-blind, multi-site randomized controlled trial
Journal name Addiction   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0965-2140
Publication date 2013-02
Year available 2012
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1111/j.1360-0443.2012.04067.x
Volume 108
Issue 2
Start page 331
End page 338
Total pages 8
Place of publication West Sussex, United Kingdom
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell
Collection year 2014
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Aims:  Like many indigenous peoples, New Zealand Māori bear a heavy burden of alcohol-related harm relative to their non-indigenous compatriots, and disparities are greatest among young adults. We tested the effectiveness of web-based alcohol screening and brief intervention (e-SBI) for reducing hazardous drinking among Māori university students.

Design: Parallel, double-blind, multi-site, randomized controlled trial.

Setting: Seven of New Zealand's eight universities.

Participants: In April 2010, we sent e-mail invitations to all 6697 17–24-year-old Māori students to complete a brief web questionnaire including the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT)-C, a screening tool for hazardous and harmful drinking. Those screening positive were computer randomized to: <10 minutes of web-based alcohol assessment and personalized feedback (intervention) or screening alone (control).

Measurements: We conducted a fully automated 5-month follow-up assessment with observers and participants blinded to study hypotheses, design and intervention delivery. Pre-determined primary outcomes were: (i) frequency of drinking, (ii) amount consumed per typical drinking occasion, (iii) overall volume of alcohol consumed and (iv) academic problems.

Findings: Of the participants, 1789 were hazardous or harmful drinkers (AUDIT-C ≥ 4) and were randomized: 850 to control, 939 to intervention. Follow-up assessments were completed by 682 controls (80%) and 733 intervention group members (78%). Relative to controls, participants receiving intervention drank less often [RR = 0.89; 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.82–0.97], less per drinking occasion (RR = 0.92; 95% CI: 0.84–1.00), less overall (RR = 0.78; 95% CI: 0.69–0.89) and had fewer academic problems (RR = 0.81; 95% CI: 0.69–0.95).

Conclusions: Web-based screening and brief intervention reduced hazardous and harmful drinking among non-help-seeking Māori students in a large-scale pragmatic trial. The study has wider implications for behavioural intervention in the important but neglected area of indigenous health.
Keyword Alcohol
Brief intervention
Indigenous health
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Non-UQ
Additional Notes Article first published online 7 November 2012.

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Non HERDC
School of Medicine Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 25 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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