Teaching internal medicine resident physicians about alcoholics anonymous: A pilot study of an educational intervention

Adam J. Rose, Melissa R. Stein, Julia H. Arnsten, Richard Saitz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Scopus citations


Greater physician confidence in treating alcoholism is associated with a higher frequency of referring alcoholic patients for treatment, but many physicians have limited experience with Alcoholics Anonymous. We implemented a brief, didactic and experiential educational intervention about AA and evaluated its effect on knowledge and attitudes, using a before-after repeated measures study design. Thirty-six first-year internal medicine resident physicians received an educational intervention, which consisted of a 45-minute lecture about AA, a visit to an AA meeting, and a 30-minute debriefing session the next day. Residents' knowledge and attitudes were assessed by a brief written anonymous survey before and after the educational intervention. Residents reported increases in self-perceived knowledge about AA and had more favorable attitudes towards AA after the intervention. Our pilot study shows that a brief, didactic and experiential course can improve physician knowledge and attitudes about AA, and holds promise for improving physician interface with this commonly used intervention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5-11
Number of pages7
JournalSubstance Abuse
Issue number3
StatePublished - Oct 23 2006



  • Alcohol dependence
  • Alcoholics Anonymous
  • Housestaff
  • Internal medicine
  • Medical education

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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