Alcoholics Seek Out Clergy For Help

July 20, 2010

A joint study by researchers at two universities reported that the majority of people with alcohol problems who seek out clergy for help have or will also use professional mental health services at some point in their recovery process.

A joint study by researchers at the University of Michigan Health System and Saint Louis University reported that the majority of people with alcohol problems who seek out clergy for help have or will also use professional mental health services at some point in their recovery process. Lead investigator, Amy Bohnert, PhD, MHS, researcher in the Department of Veterans’ Affairs National Serious Mental Illness Treatment Resource and Evaluation Center and assistant professor of psychiatry at the University of Michigan Medical School, and colleagues found that of 1910 people who had met the criteria for alcohol dependence, 14.7% sought counsel with clergy. As reported in The American Journal of Addictions, of the people who spoke with clergy, the majority had also used professional services; only 0.5% spoke only to clergy. This would indicate that even though some people with alcohol-related problems seek professional help, “clergy may benefit from training to identify alcohol use problems and serve an important role in making treatment referrals.”

Details available at:http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/123469551/abstracthttp://www2.med.umich.edu/prmc/media/newsroom/details.cfm?ID=1653

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