Alcoholism Treatment in a Nursing Home: Meeting the Needs of a Special Population

Abstract: This article describes a unique interdisciplinary alcoholism treatment program created to provide treatment to alcoholics with severe health problems.

There is evidence that severely ill alcoholics may be placed in nursing homes because it is the only available form of care.

It is estimated that up to 49% of patients in nursing homes have an alcohol problem. This high representation may be due to a lack of treatment programs, which are able to manage or treat an alcoholic who also requires skilled nursing care.

One nursing home’s response to this unmet need was to create an alcohol treatment program within its own facility. Working with the State alcohol-treatment-licensing agency, a 10-bed unit was established for the primary treatment of alcoholism for patients who were also medically appropriate for skilled nursing care. The 30-day program was staffed by licensed alcohol counselors and consisted of alcohol education; individual, group and family counseling; and skilled nursing care for co-existing health problems.

This article describes that program and compares the admission status of the first 55 participants in the program to admission status data from the National Nursing Home Survey.

Alcoholism Treatment in a Nursing Home: Meeting the Needs of a Special Population. Lee Ann Mjelde-Mossey Alcoholism Treatment Quarterly: Volume: 25 Issue: 3
Beyond the Influence: Understanding and Defeating Alcoholism
by Katherine Ketcham, William F. Asbury, Mel Schulstad, Arthur P. Ciaramicoli

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