Sponsored by University of Connecticut Health Center
Despite recent improvements in the US economy, unemployment remains a significant concern,
and estimates indicate that one-third of unemployed persons drink at hazardous levels,
adversely impacting their health and abilities to find jobs. Reinforcement interventions are
highly efficacious in reducing substance use, and they can be applied to increase
job-seeking activities as well. In partnership with CT United Labor Agency, this project is
designed to reduce hazardous drinking and enhance active participation in job-seeking
activities among those with job loss. It will evaluate the independent and combined effects
of reinforcing negative breathalyzer samples and job-seeking activities to ascertain the
simplest and most cost-effective approach to improving outcomes in this population.
Unemployed individuals with hazardous drinking (N = 280) will be randomly assigned to one of
four conditions using a 2 x 2 design: standard care, standard care with reinforcement for
submitting negative breathalyzer samples, standard care with reinforcement for job-seeking
activities, or standard care plus reinforcement for both negative breathalyzer samples and
job-seeking activities. Participants in all conditions will receive usual services part of
CT United Labor Agency, along with a novel remote breath alcohol monitoring procedure. The
study interventions will be in effect for three months, and participants will be followed
for one year. Alcohol and other drug use, employment, psychiatric symptoms, and global
measures of health will be assessed throughout treatment and follow-up. Reinforcing negative
breathalyzer samples is expected to significantly reduce drinking, and reinforcing
job-seeking activities is expected to increase re-employment rates and reduce time until job
attainment. Reinforcing both negative breathalyzer samples and job-seeking activities is
hypothesized to improve outcomes along both domains. The reinforcement interventions may
also decrease psychiatric distress and slow progression of physical decline, common among
the unemployed. If efficacious and cost-effective, results from this study may stimulate
adoption of reinforcement interventions in the context of unemployment services. Reducing
the adverse consequences of hazardous drinking and improving job re-entry may have
pronounced benefits in a highly vulnerable segment of the US population.
Your browser is currently blocking ads. We depend on ad sponsorships in order to keep this site free to the healthcare provider community. Help us keep this site free by turning off your ad blocker.
Turn Off Ad Blocker
We have detected that you are currently blocking ads. We kindly ask that you enable ads when visiting our site. We depend on ad sponsorships in order to keep this site free to the healthcare provider community.