April is Alcohol Awareness Month
With the arrival of spring, and summer following close behind, it’s a good time to talk about alcohol awareness. Healthy People 2020 lists substance abuse as one of 10 leading health indicators, and it’s considered a high priority health issue across the nation. For this indicator, the goal is to:
Reduce substance abuse to protect the health, safety, and quality of life for all, especially children.
Negative outcomes attributed to substance abuse are cardiovascular conditions, pregnancy complications, teen pregnancy, HIV/AIDS, STDs, domestic violence, child abuse, motor vehicle accidents, homicide and suicide. While there has been some progress in decreasing substance abuse, there’s still a lot more work to be done.
Educating adolescents and young adults is a great start. The American Academy of Pediatrics notes that it’s common for adolescents and young adults to experiment with alcohol, drugs and nicotine, but in no way, shape or form, should it "be condoned, facilitated or trivialized by parents, teachers, and health care providers." The National Institute on Drug Abuse aims to prevent drug use from ever starting and reports that 67% of people who try marijuana for the first time are ages 12-17. Addiction is considered a developmental disease and we must encourage young people to abstain so it doesn’t hinder their growth and development.
Screening should be done at each health maintenance exam for children and adults. There are many treatments available including behavioral therapies, medications and ancillary support services. Treatment needs to be readily available and may need to include multiple courses of treatment for success. No single treatment fits all, and treating the whole person helps address the complexity of the problem. Addiction, if untreated, can last a lifetime.
All MQIC preventive services guidelines recommend screening for alcohol and drug abuse at each health maintenance exam. Screening should also occur during an acute care visit when appropriate. Access the MQIC Screening, Diagnosis and Referral for Substance Use Disorders guideline for further recommendations.
MQIC guidelines assist by providing evidence-based recommendations in order for you to be able to focus on your patients. To help your patients increase their knowledge and commitment in their overall health, feel free to pass along MQIC guidelines and refer them to the website at www.mqic.org.
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About Our Committee
The Michigan Quality Improvement Consortium will establish and implement a core set of clinical practice guidelines and performance measures with a focus on improvement for effecting positive health outcomes.
Medical Directors' Committee
- Develop common evidence-based clinical practice guidelines
- Provide direction and final decisions for MQIC
- Establish common definitions of populations among all health plans
- Establish common measurement protocols consistent with MQIC guidelines
- Report and trend community-based performance results for key measures related to MQIC clinical practice guidelines, providing data for benchmarking and improvement
- Research and provide tools and educational materials as supplemental resources for physicians and their staff that support implementation of the MQIC clinical practice guidelines
- Coordinate health plan and physician activities that complement MQIC quality improvement efforts
- Coordinate MQIC communications
The Michigan Quality Improvement Consortium will establish and implement a core set of clinical practice guidelines and performance measures. The interventions designed and implemented by each plan to improve consistent delivery of services will be at the discretion of individual plans, but guidelines, performance goals, measurement methodology, and performance reporting will be standardized.
MQIC membership is diverse and includes physicians, health plan administrators, researchers, quality improvement experts, and specialty societies. The consortium recognizes the need to collaborate with other entities and experts to successfully achieve the consortium's vision.
Organizations and Health Plans