Friday, April 04, 2008

Drug treatment drop-outs

Studies have shown that the drop-out rate from treatment for opiate addiction is around 30-40%. A study of people dropping out of opiate treatment in Stockholm found that only 20% of them had a detailed treatment plan and only 20% participated in their own treatment planning. None of the drop-outs were enrolled in a methadone or buprenorphine programme (aimed at weaning them off heroin) at admission. Having a treatment plan at intake improved the odds of not dropping out thirteen-fold but perceiving fewer positive aspects of drug use increased the risk of dropout by a factor of 12.6. Patients with sketchy or no treatment planning at intake, no maintenance treatment and a low score on positive aspects of drug use were 7.5 times more likely to drop out. Drop-outs lacked a close maternal relationship and had insecure attachment patterns which made contact difficult with social services and substance-abuse-treatment providers.

Berman, A. H. ... [et al] - Hopeless patients? A study of illicit opiate users who drop out from in-patient detoxification Journal of Substance Use April 2008, 13(2), 121-130

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