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Preventing substance misuse: study protocol for a randomised controlled trial of the Strengthening Families Programme 10-14 UK (SFP 10-14 UK)

17 Jan 2014

Background:
Prevention of alcohol, drug and tobacco misuse by young people is a key public health priority. There is a need to develop the evidence base through rigorous evaluations of innovative approaches to substance misuse prevention. The Strengthening Families Programme 10-14 is a universal family-based alcohol, drugs and tobacco prevention programme, which has achieved promising results in US trials, and which now requires cross-cultural assessment. This paper therefore describes the protocol for a randomised controlled trial of the UK version of the Strengthening Families Programme 10-14 (SFP 10-14 UK).
Methods:
The trial comprises a pragmatic cluster randomised controlled effectiveness trial with families as the unit of randomisation, with embedded process and economic evaluations. Participating families will be randomised to one of two treatment groups - usual care with full access to existing services (control group), or usual care plus SFP 10-14 UK (intervention group). The trial has two primary outcomes - the number of occasions that young people report having drunk alcohol in the last 30 days, and drunkenness during the last 30 days, both dichotomised as 'never' and '1-2 times or more'. The main follow-up is at 2 years past baseline, and short-term and intermediate outcomes are also measured at 9 and 15 months.DiscussionThe results from this trial will provide evidence on the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of an innovative universal family-based substance misuse prevention programme in a UK context.Trial registration: Current Controlled Trials ISRCTN63550893.

Date: 
17 January 2014

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