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Oct 2019

Alcohol Use Disorder


Approximately 80% of Ontarians drink alcohol and of that about 15% report heavy use

The Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD) Tool aims to guide primary care providers through the identification and management of individuals who have challenges with alcohol use.  It includes information on special patient populations, tips for screening patients, pharmacotherapy treatment options and talking tips to help guide primary care providers through conversations with their patients about alcohol use.

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About the tool

The Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD) Tool was developed to walk primary care providers through screening, diagnosing, treating and communicating with patients who have, or are at risk of developing AUD.  The tool emphasizes a stigma-free and empathetic approach.

Primary care providers have noted the challenges associated with prescribing newer medications for the treatment of AUD. The tool provides information on these medications including patient type, what it does, laboratory work that needs to be completed prior to initiating medications and more. 

In order to navigate through difficult discussions about alcohol misuses, we’ve included talking tips based on the patient’s risk level of developing AUD to start or guide a conversation on alcohol use.

The Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD) Tool was developed using the Centre for Effective Practice’s (CEP’s) integrated knowledge translation approach. This approach ensures that providers are engaged throughout the development processes through the application of user-centered design methodology. Clinical leadership of the resource was provided by Dr. Jose Silveira. End users and clinical experts were also engaged to provide feedback.

The AUD Tool is one of several clinical tools developed as part of the Knowledge Translation in Primary Care Initiative. This multi-year initiative is a collaboration between the Centre for Effective PracticeOntario College of Family Physicians (OCFP), and Nurse Practitioners’ Association of Ontario (NPAO). Funded by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, this initiative supports primary care providers with the development of a series of clinical tools and health information resources. Learn more about the Knowledge Translation in Primary Care Initiative (KTinPC).

The project team conducted a comprehensive literature search, and developed evidence-based guidance in partnership with the clinical leads and working group. Healthcare providers and other stakeholders were also engaged throughout the development process.

Clinical leads

  • Jose Silveira


    Dr. Jose Silveira is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto. Since 2001, Dr. Silveira has worked closely with the Ontario College of Family Physician’s Collaborative Mentoring Networks on the steering committee, as co-chair and as mentor. The networks support primary care providers in managing mental disorders, addictions and chronic pain. Dr. Silveira’s professional focus is to support the delivery of mental health and addiction care through primary care and community networks.

Clinical Working Group

  • Claudette Chase, Family Physician
  • Ken Lee, Family Physician
  • Natasha St-Onge, Family Physician

Thank you to all of our members for their work!

Conflict of interest

The clinical lead received compensation for his role. 

Clinical working group members received an honorarium for their participation.

Focus group and usability participants received a small token of appreciation (e.g. gift certificate).

Expert Reviewers

LHIN-specific resources

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