AHRQ today published two new resources to help primary care clinicians and their patientsmake evidence-based decisions about which medications to use for treating alcohol use disorder (AUD), the medical diagnosis for problem drinking that causes mild to severe distress or harm. The new resources – a pair of research summaries designed to facilitate treatment discussions between clinicians and patients – will make it easier for primary care clinicians to work with their patients to make treatment decisions about medications used to treat AUD. Primary care providers are typically trained to refer patients with AUD for specialized treatment, and fewer than 10 percent of people treated for AUD receive medications currently. In the United States, more than 68 million people 18 years old or older suffer from AUD at some point in their lifetime, according to data released by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism in August 2015. The research summaries are based on findings from a 2014 AHRQ-funded review, Pharmacotherapy for Adults With Alcohol-Use Disorders in Outpatient Settings. Health professionals may earn continuing education credit based on the review.
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