NEW YORK (Reuters Health) Sep 24 - Health providers should screen all adults and pregnant women for risky drinking habits, a government-backed expert panel said Monday in new draft recommendations.
The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force guidelines were released along with a summary of past research showing a few brief counseling sessions can help cut excessive drinking in people who aren't full-blown alcoholics.
Researchers found that with such interventions, at least one in every ten risky drinkers can be brought back down to what is considered a safe drinking level.
For men, that means no more than four drinks on any one occasion and at most 14 a week. For women, the numbers are three and seven, respectively.
"The really good interventions incorporate self-help materials, they incorporate an action plan made by the doctor and the patient…