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Effectiveness of a neuroscience-based harm reduction program for older adolescents

Jan 28, 2022

Researchers from the Matilda Centre for Research in Mental Health and Substance Use have published a research report titled “Effectiveness of a neuroscience-based harm reduction program for older adolescents: A cluster randomised controlled trial of The Illicit Project.” This school-based program targeted older adolescents aged 16-19 years, and aimed to reduce risky substance use and related harms. The researchers recruited eight secondary schools across Australia, which included 950 students. Five schools received “The Illicit Project” program, while the remaining three schools were randomised to the active control group, which received their usual school AOD education. Students completed a self-report survey at the commencement of the project and again 6 months after completing the program. The researchers found that at 6-months follow-up, students in the intervention group were less likely than the control group to engage in weekly binge drinking, less likely to have high monthly alcohol consumption, less likely to engage in early onset or risky cannabis use, less likely to use MDMA or to use nicotine products. The students in the intervention group also reported lower levels of alcohol related harms, and had higher levels of drug literacy.

Go to “Effectiveness of a neuroscience-based harm reduction program for older adolescents: A cluster randomised controlled trial of The Illicit Project."