NOT-AA-23-008: Request for Information on Religion, Spirituality … – National Institutes of Health (.gov)

May 25, 2023
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)
NIAAA is requesting information from the broad community of alcohol researchers, clinicians, community leaders (including faith leaders), and advocates to help identify the most important research questions surrounding the influence of religion and spirituality on the prevention and treatment of and recovery from alcohol use disorder (AUD) and other co-morbidities. 
AUD is a complex and devastating disorder that causes myriad medical, psychological, social, economic, and personal problems. Currently, over 14.5 million Americans are diagnosed with AUD, many of whom also suffer from mental and physical health conditions. Despite these alarming numbers, many individuals go untreated for their alcohol problems.  Problematic drinking costs the United States more than $249 million annually, and causes 140,000 deaths per year, making alcohol the third-leading preventable cause of death in the United States (
Several studies have reported a relationship between religious involvement and reduced risk of AUD and alcohol use.1,2 For example, Alcohol Anonymous (AA) is a 12-step mutual-help program involving spiritual principles to help maintain abstinence from alcohol. In a recent comprehensive literature review, AA has been shown to be effective in treating AUD.3 Despite our current knowledge, more research is needed to understand the complex relationship(s) religion/spirituality have to alcohol use in various contexts at the individual and community level, across religious and spiritual belief systems, in different populations and communities, and across the lifespan.
NIAAA is interested in gathering information about barriers, scientific interests, and needs associated with researching the intersection of religion, spirituality, and health and well-being, particularly as this intersection relates to the prevention and treatment of and recovery from AUD. NIAAA is interested in hearing from investigators interested in conducting research in this area. Such information will be useful to NIAAA as it seeks to build a portfolio that addresses the impact of religion/spirituality on the prevention and treatment of and recovery from AUD. 
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)
Please submit a response to the email address below in the Inquiries section.
To ensure full consideration, responses must be received by August 1, 2023.
Responses to this RFI are voluntary. Do not include any proprietary, classified, confidential, trade secret, or sensitive information in your response. The responses will be reviewed by NIAAA staff, and individual feedback will not be provided to any responder. The U.S. Government will use the information submitted in response to this RFI at its discretion.
This RFI is for information purposes only and shall not be construed as a solicitation, grant, or cooperative agreement, or as an obligation on the part of the Federal Government, the NIH, or NIAAA to provide support for any ideas identified in response to it. The Government will not pay for the preparation of any information submitted or for the U.S. Government’s use of such information. No basis for claims against the U.S. Government shall arise as a result of a response to this request for information or from the Government’s use of such information.
1.  Liven, O., Wengrower, T., Feingold, D., Shmulewitz, D., Hasin, D. S., & Lev-Ran, S. (2021). 
           Religiosity and substance use in U.S. adults: Findings from a large-scale national survey. 
           Drug Alcohol Depend 225 [Epub ahead of print]. 
2.  Koenig, H. G. (2015). Religion, spirituality, and health: A review and update. Advances in 
           Mind-Body Medicine, 29(3), 19-26. 
3.  Kelly, J. F., Humphreys, K, & Ferri, M. (2020). Alcoholics Anonymous and other 12-step 
           programs for alcohol use disorder. Cochrane Database Systematic Reviews, [Epub ahead     
           of print].
Please direct all inquiries to:
Joan Romaine, M.P.H., M.S., LGPC, NCC
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)
Telephone: 301-594-6230

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