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NICE 'Alcohol Dependence and Harmful Alcohol Use' Quality Standard

Scope of the Quality Standard

This quality standard covers the care of children (aged 10-15 years), young people (aged 16-17 years) and adults (aged 18 years and over) drinking in a harmful way and those with alcohol dependence in all NHS-funded settings. It also includes opportunistic screening and brief interventions for hazardous and harmful drinkers.

Alcohol dependence and harmful alcohol use quality statements

The quality standard refers to harmful drinking and alcohol dependence collectively as 'alcohol misuse'. It requires that services should be commissioned from and coordinated across all relevant agencies encompassing the whole care pathway. An integrated, multidisciplinary approach to provision of services is fundamental to the delivery of high-quality care to people who misuse alcohol. A specialist alcohol service is one in which the primary role is the assessment and management of alcohol misuse, including both psychological and physical effects. Some specialist addiction services will have this role for both drug and alcohol misuse.

About NICE Quality Standards

NICE quality standards are a set of specific, concise statements and associated measures. They set out aspirational, but achievable, markers of high-quality, cost-effective patient care, covering the treatment and prevention of different diseases and conditions. They are derived from NICE guidance, other evidence sources accredited by NHS Evidence and are developed independently by NICE, in collaboration with NHS and social care professionals, their partners and service users, and address three dimensions of quality: clinical effectiveness, patient safety and patient experience.