Health services in England have been urged to develop integrated care pathways for both drug and alcohol misusers in order to standardize elements of care, improve treatment efficiency and effectiveness and deliver value for money. However, the factors that influence client access to treatment and subsequent completion of detoxification programmes are complex. A study of 6,745 people admitted to an independent sector inpatient detoxification service between January 1995 and March 2003 looked into the factors that influenced completion of treatment and compared those who had referred themselves to the service with those who had been referred by GPs or other health professionals. Factors predictive of treatment completion were found to be older age, being female, being employed and being referred by a GP. People with a stable address were more likely to be referred to the service by a GP, leading to fears that young men, with an unstable housing situation, could be excluded from treatment.
Webb, Lucy, Ryan, Tony and Meier, Petra - Care pathways to in-patient alcohol detoxification and their effects on predictors of treatment completion Journal of Substance Use August 2008, 13(4), 255-267