“Reducing Underage Drinking among South Florida Teenagers” (TXT4TeenHLTH) was a 3-year study examining the effect of alcohol prevention Short Message Services (SMS or “text messaging”) on adolescent risky behaviors. This project was funded by the Ware Foundation (FIU0002268) and represented a collaboration between FIU-CBRI and the Division of Adolescent Medicine at Nicklaus Children’s Hospital (NCH). The final sample consisted of 379 NCH patients between 12 and 18 years old and were predominantly female and Hispanic. Texting intervention was developed using a community-based research approach by means of focus-groups, in which teens expressed their perspectives on the proposed text messages. The final text messages were made available in both English and Spanish. Results indicated that perspectives regarding SMS-system protocols were favorable by Hispanic teens, which implies effectiveness for reducing alcohol consumption among teens.


Principal Investigator: Eric Wagner, Ph.D.

Co-Investigators: Michelle Hospital, Ph.D. & Staci Leon Morris Psy.D.

News Article:



  • Hospital, M.M., Wagner, E.F., Morris, S.L., Sawant, M., Siqueira, L.M., & Soumah, M. (2016). Developing an SMS intervention for the prevention of underage drinking: results from focus groups. Substance Use & Misuse, 51(2), 155-164. doi:10.3109/10826084.2015.1073325
  • Hospital, M.M., Wagner, E.F., Morris, S.L., Siqueira, L., & Sawant, M. (2013). Examining the effectiveness of an alcohol-targeted text messaging intervention with minority adolescents. Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research. Supplement: 37.
  • Sawant, M., Hospital, M.M., & Wagner, E.F. (2016). Characteristics of adult alcohol users attending “De-Addiction Camps”: A community based treatment program in rural India (Poster), Research Society on Alcoholism (RSoA), New Orleans, LA.
  • Sawant, M., Wagner, E.F., Morris, S.L., & Siqueira, L.M. (2015). Factors associated with alcohol use among minority female adolescents receiving preventive text messaging for underage drinking. Addiction Science & Clinical Practice10(S2), P10.
  • Wagner, E.F., Hospital, M.M., Morris, S.L., & Sawant, M. (2014). An RCT of text messaging (SMS) for reducing underage alcohol use among Hispanic adolescents. The Addiction Newsletter, 21, 22-23.

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