Screening and managing cannabis use

Comparing GP's and nurses' knowledge, beliefs, and behavior

Melissa M. Norberg*, Peter Gates, Paul Dillon, David J. Kavanagh, Ramesh Manocha, Jan Copeland

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

11 Citations (Scopus)
14 Downloads (Pure)


Background: General practitioners (GPs) and nurses are ideally placed to address the significant unmet demand for the treatment of cannabis-related problems given the numbers of people who regularly seek their care. The aim of this study was to evaluate differences between GPs and nurses' perceived knowledge, beliefs, and behaviors toward cannabis use and its screening and management.Methods: This study involved 161 nurses and 503 GPs who completed a survey distributed via conference satchels to delegates of Healthed seminars focused on topics relevant to women and children's health. Differences between GPs and nurses were analyzed using χ2- tests and two-sample t-tests, while logistic regression examined predictors of service provision.Results: GPs were more likely than nurses to have engaged in cannabis-related service provision, but also more frequently reported barriers related to time, interest, and having more important issues to address. Nurses reported less knowledge, skills, and role legitimacy. Perceived screening skills predicted screening and referral to alcohol and other drug (AOD) services, while knowing a regular user increased the likelihood of referrals only.Conclusions: Approaches to increase cannabis-related screening and intervention may be improved by involving nurses, and by leveraging the relationship between nurses and doctors, in primary care.

Original languageEnglish
Article number31
Pages (from-to)1-10
Number of pages10
JournalSubstance Abuse: Treatment, Prevention, and Policy
Publication statusPublished - 24 Jul 2012
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

This version is archived for private and non-commercial use under the terms of this BioMed Central open access license ("license") (see The work is protected by copyright and/or other applicable law. Any use of the work other than as authorized under this license is prohibited. For further rights please check the terms of the license, or contact the publisher.

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Screening and managing cannabis use: Comparing GP's and nurses' knowledge, beliefs, and behavior'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this