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Testing Delivery Channels of Brief Motivational Alcohol Intervention (PECO)

This study has been completed.
German Cancer Aid
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Dr. Jennis Freyer-Adam, University Medicine Greifswald Identifier:
First received: February 4, 2011
Last updated: December 1, 2015
Last verified: December 2015
The aim of this study is to investigate whether motivation-tailored alcohol interventions are more effective when delivered by person or by computer-generated feedback letters. A sample of 920 general hospital inpatients with risky drinking will be recruited through a computerized screening procedure. Patients with more severe alcohol problems will be excluded from the study. Participants will be allocated by time frame randomization to one of three study arms: (1) personal counseling based on Motivational Interviewing, (2) computer-expert system intervention that generates individualized feedback-letters, and (3) control group (treatment-as-usual). The interventions differ in their channel of delivery, but not regarding their content. Both intervention groups receive interventions at three time points: directly after the baseline-assessment at the general hospital, and 1 and 3 months later by mail and phone, respectively. Outcome will be assessed six, 12, 18 and 24 months after baseline.

Condition Intervention Phase
Hazardous Drinking
Behavioral: Personal Counseling
Behavioral: Computer-generated feedback letters
Phase 2
Phase 3

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Randomized
Endpoint Classification: Efficacy Study
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: Single Blind (Subject)
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Testing Delivery Channels of Brief Motivational Alcohol Intervention Among General Hospital Inpatients With Risky Drinking: Personal Counseling Versus Computer-generated Feedback Letters

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by University Medicine Greifswald:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Risky drinking [ Time Frame: 6, 12, 18, 24 months ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
    Determined by using average alcohol consumption per day, heavy occasional drinking, highest blood alcohol concentration, the Alcohol Use Disorder Identification Test-Consumption (AUDIT-C) score

Secondary Outcome Measures:
  • Motivation to reduce drinking [ Time Frame: 6, 12, 18, 24 months ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
    Assessed by a stages of change-algorithm

  • Attempts to reduce drinking [ Time Frame: 6, 12, 18, 24 months ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
  • Knowledge about drinking limits [ Time Frame: 6, 12, 18, 24 months ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
  • Self-efficacy scores [ Time Frame: 6 months ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
    Assessed by a modified short-form of the Alcohol-Abstinence-Self-Efficacy-Scale (AASE). The modified form assesses self-efficacy regarding compliance with drinking limits.

  • Decisional balance scores [ Time Frame: 6 months ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
    Assessed by a short form of the Alcohol Decisional Balance Scale (ADBS)

  • Self-rated health [ Time Frame: 6, 12, 18, 24 months ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
  • Health care utilization [ Time Frame: 6, 12, 18, 24 months ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]

Enrollment: 975
Study Start Date: February 2011
Study Completion Date: November 2014
Primary Completion Date: November 2014 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Arms Assigned Interventions
Experimental: Personal counseling Behavioral: Personal Counseling
At three time-points, participants receive counseling by health professionals trained in Motivational Interviewing based counseling. To assure that both interventions do not differ in their content, individual manuals generated by a software program are used. Counseling will be face-to-face during the hospital stay, and by phone one and three months later.
Experimental: Computer generated feedback letters Behavioral: Computer-generated feedback letters
At three time points, participants receive feedback letters, tailored to the stages of change according to the TTM, and generated by a computer software program. The first letter is handed out during their hospital stay and includes normative feedback. One and three months later, participants receive ipsative feedback letters by mail.
No Intervention: Control group
Treatment as usual


Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years to 64 Years   (Adult)
Genders Eligible for Study:   Both
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • General hospital inpatients with risky drinking (AUDIT-C >= 4/5 (women/men) and AUDIT < 20)

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Patients already recruited during an earlier hospital stay
  • Patients physically and mentally not capable of participating in the study
  • Patients with a hospital stay of less than 24 hours
  • Patients with insufficient language/ reading skills
  • Patients employed at one of the departments participating in the study or conducting the study
  • Patients with more severe alcohol problems (AUDIT >= 20)
  Contacts and Locations
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Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT01291693

Institute of Social Medicine and Prevention, University Medicine Greifswald
Greifswald, Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, Germany, 17475
Sponsors and Collaborators
University Medicine Greifswald
German Cancer Aid
Principal Investigator: Jennis Freyer-Adam, PhD Institute of Social Medicine and Prevention, University Medicine Greifswald
Principal Investigator: Beate Gaertner, PhD Department of Epidemiology and Health Monitoring, Robert Koch-Institute Berlin
Principal Investigator: Ulrich John, Prof PhD Institute of Social Medicine and Prevention, University Medicine Greifswald
  More Information

Additional Information:
Responsible Party: Dr. Jennis Freyer-Adam, Principle investigator, University Medicine Greifswald Identifier: NCT01291693     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: 108376  DM8-IESO03  108376  DM8-IESO04  109737  110676  110543  111346 
Study First Received: February 4, 2011
Last Updated: December 1, 2015
Health Authority: Germany: Ethics Commission

Keywords provided by University Medicine Greifswald:
Hazardous drinking
general hospital
brief intervention
Motivational Interviewing
computer-generated feedback
delivery channel processed this record on October 25, 2016