How Personal Perspectives Shape Health Professionals' Perceptions of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder and Risk.


Rural Health School, La Trobe University, Melbourne, VIC 3086, Australia. [Email]


This article examines how health, allied health and social service professionals' personal perspectives about alcohol and the risks associated with alcohol consumption become non-clinical factors that may influence their professional practice responses in relation to fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD). It presents findings derived from a qualitative, interview-based study of professionals from a range of health, allied health and social service professions in New Zealand. The data derived from these interviews revealed four frames of reference that practitioners use when thinking about alcohol and risk: reflection on personal experience; experiences of friends, relatives and colleagues; social constructions of alcohol use and misuse; and comparisons to other types of drug use. The article concludes that these non-clinical factors are important considerations in professional decision making about FASD.


FASD,alcohol,fetal alcohol spectrum disorder,non-clinical factors,pregnancy,risk,

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