Time to Get Help? Help-Seeking Process in Latin American Hospital Patients with Alcohol Use Disorder


Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD) is one of the most harmful conditions associated with consumption. Despite a high level of consumption and an elevated number of people living with an AUD, evidence from help-seeking processes in Latin America is scarce and absent in Argentina. This paper aims to describe reasons for delaying and starting help-seeking, the process of problem awareness, and the years elapsed between drinking initiation, problem awareness, and help-seeking, as perceived by a clinical, non-random sample of people with AUD (n = 51). The most frequent reason for delaying help-seeking was not believing there was a problem. The most frequent motivators for seeking help were having physical or psychological problems due to use and repeated attempts to reduce or stop use. The outcomes of this study can be useful for designing interventions to reduce help-seeking barriers and facilitate access to treatment.

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Partial funding for this study was provided by the Universidad Nacional de Mar del Plata (UNMdP) and by the Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones científicas y Técnicas (CONICET), Argentina.

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Correspondence to Karina Conde.

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All procedures followed were under the ethical standards of the responsible committee on human experimentation (institutional and national) and with the Helsinki Declaration of 1975, as revised in 2000. Informed consent was obtained from all patients for being included in the study.

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Conde, K., Salomon, T., Civetta, E. et al. Time to Get Help? Help-Seeking Process in Latin American Hospital Patients with Alcohol Use Disorder. Int J Ment Health Addiction 18, 328–335 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11469-019-00157-3

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  • Alcohol Use Disorder
  • Treatment barriers
  • Help-seeking
  • Hospital patients