A new report, Alcohol and brain damage in adults - With reference to high-risk groups by the Royal College of Physicians, the Royal College of General Practitioners and the Association of British Neurologists calls for clinical commissioning groups to support services that provide specialist care for patients with alcohol-related brain damage (ARBD).
The report highlights how alcohol abuse can cause changes to people’s brain function and intellect, even though many will not be aware of it.
Specific recommendations are presented in the context of four specialist settings: alcohol treatment services, prisons, acute hospitals and pregnancy/fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD).
The report provides examples of service delivery models couched in the context of a team within a mental health trust, accessing clinicians across clinical teams, an ARBD team closely affiliated with the alcohol treatment services and a team embedded within an early onset dementia team. In the absence of significant research (except in a minority of areas), the evidence is derived from descriptive studies and clinical reviews.
This follows a report from Alcohol Concern Wales last year, All in the Mind, calling for greater awareness of ARBD and clearer pathways for prevention and treatment.