Stafford Alcohol Service

Alcohol Intervention and Brief  Advice Service: Stafford Borough Pharmacies

Updated SLA July 2016

Alcohol Screening and Brief Intervention SLA 25th July 2016

What do I need to do to deliver the service?

For pharmacies currently delivering the service you simply need to sign the updated SLA and return a copy of the signature page to the LPC – as outlined below.

If you are a pharmacy in Stafford Borough and are interested in delivering this service please download the SLA for further details.

In order to better understand the service and prepare yourself and your team you can download the pdf of the presentation from the launch evening and also the Resource Pack. Once you have worked through the information you can either sign up to the service or contact the LPC for more information.  Once the LPC receive a copy of the signature page of the SLA we will arrange to deliver your resources (leaflets, scratchcards etc).

Alcohol ID and Brief Advice Service: Launch Event presentation

Resources for Pharmacies July 2016 which includes information on modules for staff training.

Please send a copy of the signature page of the SLA (no need to send the whole SLA back to us).  Send either by email to or by post to Meeson House (address can be found in the banner at the bottom of the webpage).


Each pharmacy in Stafford Borough is eligible to be part of this paid service commissioned by Stafford Borough Council.  Documents required for delivering the service are located at the end of this page.

Aims and intended service outcomes

  • To improve access to and choice of alcohol screening and intervention support services closer to peoples’ homes.
  • To provide quicker access to early assessment of potential alcohol related harm.
  • To provide an early intervention to reduce the number of people who may become alcohol dependent.
  • To reduce alcohol related illnesses and deaths by helping people to reduce or give up drinking.
  • To help service users access additional treatment by offering timely referral to specialist services where appropriate.
  • To minimise the impact on the wider community by reducing the levels of alcohol related crime and anti-social behaviour, thereby improving community safety.

Useful Service Documentation

Form for recording information about scratch card uptake and client’s results

AUDIT Questionnaire

Proforma for use when you do not have a live connection to PharmOutcomes

Change 4 Life Alcohol Booklet

OneRecoveryStaffordshire_Referral_Form 2016

Service description

Community pharmacies within Stafford Borough signed up to the service will deliver coordinated alcohol identification, screening and brief intervention programme as part of the borough-wide strategy.

The programme has 6 elements:

  1. Identification

Using defined criteria, clients ‘walking in’ to a participating pharmacy will be offered screening using the AUDIT alcohol assessment tool (Alcohol Usage Disorder Identification Test, WHO 1982). Initial screening will use NPA “Rethink your Drink” scratchcards.

Defined Criteria for Screening:

Any client that the Pharmacist / trained staff member identifies as needing advice/support around alcohol use, but in particular:

  • Vulnerable groups:
  • Females and Males and 18 – 30 years
  • Black and Racial Minorities Groups (BRM) all age groups
  • 65+ males and females
  • Homeless
  • Diabetics
  • Gastric problems – e.g. peptic & duodenal ulcers
  • Falls and associated injuries
  • High blood pressure
  • Depression
  • Anxiety / stress
  • Clients presenting frequently with symptoms which may be associated with alcohol misuse e.g.
  • Identified during a Medication Use Review (MUR), New Medicines Service (NMS), or Smoking Cessation, Emergency Hormonal Contraception (EHC), Chlamydia consultation, or other conversation between pharmacist or pharmacy team members and patients/clients/customers.
  • Self-referral by the individual
  • Referral by another health or social care worker.

People not wishing to initially engage or those who choose not to complete the programme may be offered appropriate health literature or referral to an alternative service.

  1. Screening

The Pharmacist / trained staff member will undertake AUDIT with the client, having first explained the “unit” system for measuring alcohol intake. An initial filter, comprising the first three questions of AUDIT (AUDIT-C), will be used. This will be delivered in the form of a scratch-card which the client will be invited to complete.   Clients scoring 4 or less will be exited from the assessment and provided with printed notes on the dangers of alcohol and asked to pass these on as appropriate. For all other interviewees, AUDIT scores and average total number of units consumed per week will be recorded. The AUDIT score and number of units consumed per week plus client details should be tracked on a monitoring form. An online monitoring form should be completed for EACH client regardless of the AUDIT score. This screening will be provided free of charge as part of the normal pharmacy operations (Promoting healthy lifestyles essential service)

  1. Brief Intervention

If the AUDIT score determines that the patient scores between 8 -15 (hazardous drinking category) the Pharmacist or trained staff member will carry out a brief intervention which must consist of:

  • Explanation of daily benchmarks
  • Re-statement of what is a unit of alcohol
  • Explanation of category of drinker
  • Explanation of the content of the Educational Safer Drinking Information leaflet
  1. Referral

If a client scores 16 or more (which moves towards either a harmful or dependent drinking category) then appropriate referrals should be made to the specialist service.

Referral to: The Healthy Staffordshire Wellbeing Service – Together4Heatlh

The Healthy Staffordshire Wellbeing service is delivered by Together4Health who are able to offer up to three 30 minute extended brief advice sessions to clients (aged 18 and above) scoring between 8 and 19 on the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT), identified as hazardous / harmful drinking.

For clients who score 16-19 on the AUDIT and who agree to be referred, the referral should be to the Together4Heatlh service.

NB For clients who scored 8-15 on the AUDIT  and who you have already delivered brief advice to but who you think would benefit from the longer sessions offered by this service – they can be referred despite them already having received the pharmacy service.

Pharmacists can contact Together4Heatlh for information, advice or to make a referral on 0300 124 0351.


More information is available about this Together4Health service here

Referral to: The One Recovery Service

For those scoring 20 and above you should refer to One Recovery as they can offer professional support for those drinking at higher levels of risk.

The client should sign the record form to consent to referral. The pharmacy will then complete the relevant referral form and send this directly to One Recovery Staffordshire. This referral form is available via the LPC website and PharmOutcomes platform.

  1. Follow up

For those clients having scored 8-15 (hazardous drinking category), the pharmacy should attempt a follow up after 4 weeks and 8 weeks, using the three follow up questions of the AUDIT-C. The follow-up may be conducted in-pharmacy or by telephone and details of responses to each of these calls will be recorded using the PharmOutcomes platform and the results will be available for viewing in “real time”.


  1. Monitoring of the service

Pharmacies will be expected to:

  • Agree to and use screening and data collection tools (AUDIT-C (scratch-card) and AUDIT form. Monitoring via online Form input into PharmOutcomes)
  • Agree to record details about all brief interventions and referral processes on the online recording system PharmOutcomes. There will be one monitoring entry per client, and these will be saved securely on the computer system which will be available to all pharmacies in the borough.
  • Activity data will be recorded online on PharmOutcomes and this system will generate any claims for payments. The monies and payments will be managed by the LPC.