Open Access Study protocol

Study Protocol - Alcohol Management Plans (AMPs) in remote indigenous communities in Queensland: their impacts on injury, violence, health and social indicators and their cost-effectiveness

Alan R Clough1*, Michelle S Fitts2, Jan A Robertson3, Anthony Shakeshaft4, Adrian Miller5, Christopher M Doran6, Reinhold Muller7, Valmae Ypinazar8, David Martin9, Robyn McDermott10, Rob Sanson-Fisher11, Simon Towle12, Stephen A Margolis13 and Caryn West14

Author Affiliations

1 Community-based Health Promotion and Prevention Studies Group, Australian Institute of Tropical Health and Medicine, James Cook University (Cairns Campus), PO Box 6811, Cairns, Qld 4870, Australia

2 Centre for Accident Research and Road Safety - Queensland (CARRS-Q), Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Qld 4059, Australia

3 School of Public Health, Tropical Medicine & Rehabilitation Sciences, School of Nursing, Nutrition & Midwifery, James Cook University, PO Box 6811, Cairns, Qld 4870, Australia

4 National Drug and Alcohol Research centre, University of NSW, Sydney, NSW 2052, Australia

5 Indigenous Health, Indigenous Research Network, Griffith University, Brisbane, Qld 4111, Australia

6 Hunter Medical Research Institute, University of Newcastle, Locked Bag 1000, New Lambton Heights, NSW 2305, Australia

7 School of Public Health, Tropical Medicine and Rehabilitation Sciences, James Cook University (Cairns Campus), PO Box 6811, Cairns, Qld 4870, Australia

8 Adjunct Senior Research Fellow School of Medicine and Dentistry, James Cook University, Cairns 4870, Australia

9 ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences, Acton, ACT 0200, Australia

10 Centre of Research Excellence for Preventable Chronic Conditions, Australian Institute for Tropical Health and Medicine, James Cook University, PO Box 6811, Cairns, QLD 4870, Australia

11 Health Behaviour, Health Behaviour Research Group, School of Medicine and Public Health, University of Newcastle, Newcastle, Australia

12 Department of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and Multicultural Affairs, Level 2, William McCormack Place, 5B Sheridan Street, PO Box 5365, Cairns, Queensland 4870, Australia

13 School of Medicine, Griffith University, Parklands Drive, Southport, Queensland 4215, Australia

14 School of Nursing, Midwifery and Nutrition, James Cook University, Po Box 6811, Cairns, QLD 4870, Australia

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BMC Public Health 2014, 14:15  doi:10.1186/1471-2458-14-15

Published: 9 January 2014



In 2002/03 the Queensland Government responded to high rates of alcohol-related harm in discrete Indigenous communities by implementing alcohol management plans (AMPs), designed to include supply and harm reduction and treatment measures. Tighter alcohol supply and carriage restrictions followed in 2008 following indications of reductions in violence and injury. Despite the plans being in place for over a decade, no comprehensive independent review has assessed to what level the designed aims were achieved and what effect the plans have had on Indigenous community residents and service providers. This study will describe the long-term impacts on important health, economic and social outcomes of Queensland’s AMPs.


The project has two main studies, 1) outcome evaluation using de-identified epidemiological data on injury, violence and other health and social indicators for across Queensland, including de-identified databases compiled from relevant routinely-available administrative data sets, and 2) a process evaluation to map the nature, timing and content of intervention components targeting alcohol. Process evaluation will also be used to assess the fidelity with which the designed intervention components have been implemented, their uptake and community responses to them and their perceived impacts on alcohol supply and consumption, injury, violence and community health. Interviews and focus groups with Indigenous residents and service providers will be used. The study will be conducted in all 24 of Queensland’s Indigenous communities affected by alcohol management plans.


This evaluation will report on the impacts of the original aims for AMPs, what impact they have had on Indigenous residents and service providers. A central outcome will be the establishment of relevant databases describing the parameters of the changes seen. This will permit comprehensive and rigorous surveillance systems to be put in place and provided to communities empowering them with the best credible evidence to judge future policy and program requirements for themselves. The project will inform impending alcohol policy and program adjustments in Queensland and other Australian jurisdictions.

The project has been approved by the James Cook University Human Research Ethics Committee (approval number H4967 & H5241).

Alcohol; Indigenous; Alcohol Management Plans; Public Health