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Employers should help prevent misuse of alcohol by employees

BMJ 2013; 347 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.f6590 (Published 07 November 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;347:f6590

Re: Employers should help prevent misuse of alcohol by employees

Sir,

Responses to the article I wrote are very encouraging. There needs to be a clear understanding from employers and employees that self-assessment is not the same as testing.

Employers (some at least) already test their staff for alcohol use. What we are proposing is rather different - that staff be given the option to self-assess their own drinking privately.

We are not suggesting that employers carry out AUDIT screens on their staff, on the contrary, we want employers to encourage staff to self-administer this for themselves - wholly anonymously and confidentially.

We believe this can act to raise self-awareness and reduce hazardous drinking - helping high risk drinking to be self-identified and corrective action to be taken by employees independently of their employer. Thus preventing drink problems from developing at an earlier stage.

Competing interests: No competing interests

15 November 2013
Don Shenker
Director
Alcohol Health Network
4th Floor, Willow House, 17-23 Willow Place, London SE1 1JH