Screening for Alcohol and Other Drug Use Problems Among the Deaf


By bhadmin February 2, 2021

No alcohol and other drug screening or diagnostic instruments have been validated for Deaf populations, although screening tools exist in other languages, such as Spanish. Deaf individuals traditionally have had difficulty understanding tests created for hearing populations because they contain wording or phrases that are unfamiliar in Deaf culture. The purpose of this study was to lay the groundwork for developing a culturally relevant alcohol and other drug screening instrument for Deaf individuals. Deaf individuals were asked about their understanding of items from two widely-used screening instruments, the CAGE and the AUDIT, which were developed for hearing individuals. Deaf participants reported difficulty with both instruments, with some words problematic for 88% of participants. Providers using these instruments should be aware of their limitations when used with Deaf individuals.

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