An Internet Quiz Game Intervention for Adolescent Alcohol Drinking: A Clustered RCT

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Pediatrics. 2021 Nov 29:e2021051005. doi: 10.1542/peds.2021-051005. Online ahead of print.

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Interventions on adolescent drinking have yielded mixed results. We assessed the effectiveness of an Internet quiz game intervention compared to conventional health education.

METHODS: In this cluster randomized controlled trial with parallel group design, we randomly allocated 30 participating schools to the Internet quiz game intervention or the conventional health education (comparison) group, with 1:1 ratio. Students of Hong Kong secondary schools (aged 12-15 years) were recruited. The intervention was a 4-week Web-based quiz game competition in which participating students answered 1000 alcohol-related multiple-choice quiz questions. The comparison group received a printed promotional leaflet and hyperlinks to alcohol-related information.

RESULTS: Of 30 eligible schools, 15 (4294 students) were randomly assigned to the Internet quiz game intervention group and 15 (3498 students) to the comparison group. Average age of participants was 13.30 years. No significant between-group differences were identified at baseline. Overall retention rate for students was 86.0%. At 1-month follow-up, fewer students in the intervention group reported drinking (9.8% vs 12.1%, risk ratio 0.79, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.68 to 0.92; P = .003), and those who drank reported drinking less alcohol (standardized difference β -0.06, 95% CI -0.11 to -0.01; P = .02). Between-group differences remained statistically significant at 3-month follow-up (10.4% vs 11.6%, risk ratio 0.86, 95% CI 0.74 to 0.999; P = .048; β -0.06, 95% CI -0.11 to -0.01; P = .02).

CONCLUSIONS: The Internet quiz game intervention reduced underage drinking by 21% at 1-month and 14% at 3-month follow-up compared with conventional health education.

PMID:34841427 | DOI:10.1542/peds.2021-051005