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Lapham GT, Hawkins EJ, Chavez LJ, Achtmeyer CE, Williams EC, Thomas RM, Ludman EJ, Kypri K, Hunt SC, Bradley KA. Feedback from recently returned veterans on an anonymous web-based brief alcohol intervention. Addiction science & clinical practice. 2012 Aug 28; 7(1):17.
BACKGROUND: Veterans of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom (OEF/OIF) are at increased risk for alcohol misuse, and innovative methods are needed to improve their access to alcohol screening and brief interventions (SBI). This study adapted an electronic SBI (e-SBI) website shown to be efficacious in college students for OEF/OIF veterans and reported findings from interviews with OEF/OIF veterans about their impressions of the e-SBI. METHODS: Outpatient veterans of OEF/OIF who drank 3 days in the past week were recruited from a US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Deployment Health Clinic waiting room. Veterans privately pretested the anonymous e-SBI then completed individual semistructured audio-recorded interviews. Their responses were analyzed using template analysis to explore domains identified a priori as well as emergent domains. RESULTS: During interviews, all nine OEF/OIF veterans (1 woman and 8 men) indicated they had received feedback for risky alcohol consumption. Participants generally liked the standard-drinks image, alcohol-related caloric and monetary feedback, and the website's brevity and anonymity (a priori domains). They also experienced challenges with portions of the e-SBI assessment and viewed feedback regarding alcohol risk and normative drinking as problematic, but described potential benefits derived from the e-SBI (emergent domains). The most appealing e-SBIs would ensure anonymity and provide personalized transparent feedback about alcohol-related risk, consideration of the context for drinking, strategies to reduce drinking, and additional resources for veterans with more severe alcohol misuse. CONCLUSIONS: Results of this qualitative exploratory study suggest e-SBI may be an acceptable strategy for increasing OEF/OIF veteran access to evidenced-based alcohol SBI.