ASSESSMENT PROJECT ANALYSIS 1
Assessment Project Analysis
ASSESSMENT PROJECT ANALYSIS 2
Assessment Project Analysis
I used the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT) tool when interviewing my client. This particular assessment was designed to identify alcohol consumption and observe patterns that can lead to excessive drinking. The AUDIT assessment also provides a framework for interventions that can educate clients regarding low-risk and high-risk alcohol consumption levels (Babor, Higgin-Biddle, Saunders &Monteiro, 2001). Screening for alcohol consumption is important to both the mental and physical well-being of any client. Research has shown that excessive drinking can lead to serious medical complication such as high blood pressure, strokes, liver damage, and even death. Furthermore, excessive drinking affects the client’s cognitive abilities resulting in delayed reaction time, behavioral changes, depression, and even periods of blackouts.
During my assessment I found AUDIT to be helpful with screening my client. While the questions AUDIT used provided insight into my client’s drinking habits, it left out valuable information that could have further assisted in determining their level classification. The AUDIT assessment works by having client answer ten multiple choice drinking related questions regarding their recent alcohol use, alcohol dependence symptoms and any alcohol-related problems they might have experienced (McNeese &DiNitto, 2012). The client’s responses are linked to a point based number response. At the end of the assessment, you add the points assigned to each response which gives you
a total number between 0-40. The intervention suggestions are then broken down into four different zones. The first zone is based between 0-7 which suggests client alcohol education. The second zone ranges from 8-15 and suggests simple advice regarding drinking is appropriate. The third zone is between the 16-19 point ranges and suggests simple advice in conjunction with brief counseling and continued monitoring of the client. Zone four is the highest with points ranging from 20-40. This classification recommends a referral to a specialist for diagnostic evaluation and treatment regarding substance abuse.
Instead of reading the answers, I gave my client the form to fill out himself. This provided to be a mistake because the client noticed the numerical point system and began attempting to change his answers. Thankfully, I was able to stop him from finishing on his own and proceeded to read the questions out loud
Thus far, the AUDIT assessment can be used in a variety of populations. This assessment is appropriate for both male and female clients and can be taken amongst a variety of different age groups. The AUDIT tool is available in several different languages as well. However, sociocultural factors need to be considered when using the AUDIT assessment. Depending on cultural factors the standard drink size, beverage preferences and drinking customs may be different (Babor, Higgin-Biddle, Saunders &Monteiro, 2001). As a result, the professional may be required to change the questions to conform to their cultural settings.
I believe that the AUDIT assessment lacks flexibility in how it can be taken, however. The questionnaire portion provided detailed questions but it required me to verbally read them due to the labeled point system on the responses. As a result, it can limit who is capable of using the AUDIT tool. If the client if deaf or hard of hearing this assessment style would not work. If the client was unable to comprehend questioning and needed to read the material he/she would know their responses are scored and could be less than truthful. Additionally, the client must be cooperative and coherent in order to successfully complete the assessment. Depending on which context the professional is engaging the client such as in the emergency room in duress, they may have to wait until the client is cognitively capable before it can be administered.
I would recommend that several questions be added. I believe knowing the age range of when the client started drinking is very important since underage drinking puts the client at a higher risk of developing a substance abuse/misuse problem Another important question I would add would be if there is a family history of substance abuse along with a known family history of mental illness (McNeese &DiNitto, 2012). Heredity plays a role in developing addictions and some mental illness. Usually, genetics, environment, and mental illness are common reasons why someone may self-medicate which can lead to addiction. If professionals can get a quick gauge of family history with simple yes or no questions they can touch on these topics to get better insight.
Findings and Recommendations for Treatment
My client scored a 23 on the AUDIT system which is an indicator that a substance abuse problem exists. According to the levels, my client is in zone four and requires
diagnostic evaluation by a specialist and should seek treatment for substance abuse. I would recommend that my client gets evaluated by a professional that can administer a more complex set of testing to determine his exact level of addiction. In the meantime, I would explain the risks of excessive drinking and the effects it has on his body in hopes that he might slow down until he can see a professional. Another treatment option would be for my client to attend an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting so he can observe what excessive drinking patterns can lead too.
Without having a professional evaluate him, I am unsure exactly where he falls in the alcoholism spectrum so it may be too soon to recommend seeking treatment in a treatment/rehabilitation center for addicts. Lastly, I would remind my client that he should not drink when operating a vehicle or machinery and that he should seek advice prior to drinking if he is on certain medications such as sedatives, anti-hypertensives, and analgesics as they might create deadly complications when mixed with alcohol. If my client was a female I would also recommend that she does not drink during a pregnancy as it can lead to Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, premature birth, and low birth weight (McNeese &DiNitto, 2012).
The AUDIT assessment is overall effective in locating excessive drinking patterns in clients. The AUDIT tool is easy to use amongst different populations, genders and sociocultural backgrounds. There are a few lacking questions on the AUDIT assessment
such as age when their drinking started and whether or not there is a family history of mental illness or addictions. The assessment is a great starting point to address the clients drinking patterns. My client found the assessment to be beneficial and agreed that there is a substance abuse issue that he needs to address. As a result of the AUDIT tool I was able to identify excessive drinking and recommend several options for treatment while reminding him of the dangers associated with drinking while driving or taking medication.
Babor, T. F., Higgin-Biddle, J. C., Saunders, J. B., &Monteiro, M. G. (2001). AUDIT; The Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test Guidelines for Use in Primary Care (2nd ed.). Retrieved from http://www.talkingalcohol.com/files/pdfs/WHO_audit.pdf
McNeese, C. A., &DiNitto, D. M. (2012). Chemical dependency: A systems approach(4th ed.).