BACKGROUND: In Denmark, approximately 150,000 people have alcohol use disorder (AUD). However, only approximately 10% seek AUD treatment, preferably outside conventional health care settings and opening hours. The AUD treatment area experiences low adherence to treatment, as well as high numbers of no-show and premature dropouts.
OBJECTIVE: The purpose of the Blend-A (Blended Treatment for Alcohol Use Disorder) feasibility and pilot study was to describe the process of translating and adapting the Dutch treatment protocol into Danish and Danish culture with a high amount of user involvement and to report how patients and therapists perceived the adapted version, when trying it out.
METHODS: The settings were 3 Danish public municipal outpatient alcohol clinics. Study participants were patients and therapists from the 3 settings. Data consisted of survey data from the System Usability Scale, individual patient interviews, and therapist group interviews. Statistical analyses were conducted using the Stata software and Excel. Qualitative analysis was conducted using a theoretical thematic analysis.
RESULTS: The usability of the treatment platform was rated above average. The patients chose to use the blended treatment format because it ensured anonymity and had a flexible design. Platform use formed the basis of face-to-face sessions. The use of the self-determined platform resulted in a more thorough process. Patient involvement qualified development of a feasible system. Managerial support for time use was essential. Guidance from an experienced peer was useful.
CONCLUSIONS: This study indicates that, during the processes of translating, adapting, and implementing blended, guided, internet-based, and face-to-face AUD treatment, it is relevant to focus on patient involvement, managerial support, and guidance from experienced peers. Owing to the discrete and flexible design of the blended offer, it appears that it may reach patient groups who would not otherwise have sought treatment. Therefore, blended treatment may increase access to treatment and contribute to reaching people affected by excessive alcohol use, who would not otherwise have sought treatment. In addition, it seems that the blended offer may enhance the participants' perceived satisfaction and the effect of the treatment course. Thus, it appears that Blend-A may be able to contribute to existing treatment offers. Such findings highlight the need to determine the actual effect of the Blend-A offer; therefore, an effectiveness study with a controlled design is warranted.