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Monday, April 8, 2013


In the US more people report going to an Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) meeting than reported going to any other support or therapy group for an alcohol problem. [1] Despite the importance of accurate incidence and prevalence information on AA membership the research data has been sparse.  

Data on membership in AA has been reported in the Triennial Surveys conducted by Alcoholics Anonymous World Service every three years from 1968 to 2007 . However these studies did not cover incidence and characteristics of new AA members or prevalence and characteristics of discontinued AA members. Also, the AA Triennial Surveys have other significant limitations [2] i.e., there are limitations in survey coverage, it has been estimated that about 20% of the AA groups are not registered with Intergroup Offices and therefore are not a part of the survey sample. In addition, while AA World Services in 1983 adopted a stratified sampling process, the findings of the AA surveys have never been validated in an independent representative sample of the US population.

This paper is a descriptive study of social, demographic, and behavioral characteristics associated with 1) never attending AA, 2) dropping out of AA, and 3) continuing membership in AA .

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