Care home workers, voluntary groups and community nurses could play
a greater role in advising and counselling older people on the
impact of alcohol use, a new study recommends.
The research, which looked at older people in Ayrshire and Arran in
Scotland, found that they cannot make informed choices about
alcohol use largely because of a lack of clear guidance
specifically for them. There is also no overall system for
monitoring the effects alcohol has on older people’s lives, while
few use general addiction services.
It finds that non-specialist alcohol staff are well placed to offer
support and advice, and certain older people could be trained to
provide advice to their peers. Services for moderate and light
drinkers also need to be given higher priority.
The report calls for the prevention of alcohol-related harm in old
age to be placed on the agenda of all public, private and voluntary
organisations, and for questions about alcohol consumption to be
asked routinely at health and social care assessments.
– Older People and Alcohol from www.3sf.co.uk/publications.htm