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Addiction. 2006 May;101(5):678-88.

Intensive referral to 12-Step self-help groups and 6-month substance use disorder outcomes.

Author information

  • 1Center for Health Care Evaluation, Department of Veterans Affairs Health Care System and Stanford University Medical Center, Palo Alto, CA 94025, USA. ctimko@stanford.edu

Abstract

AIMS:

This study implemented and evaluated procedures to help clinicians make effective referrals to 12-Step self-help groups.

DESIGN:

Randomized controlled trial. Setting Out-patient substance use disorder treatment. Participants Individuals with substance use disorders (SUDs) entering a new treatment episode (n = 345) who were assigned randomly to a standard referral- or an intensive referral-to-self-help condition.

MEASUREMENTS:

Self-reports of 12-Step group attendance and involvement and substance use at baseline and a 6-month follow-up.

INTERVENTION:

The intensive referral intervention focused on encouraging patients to attend 12-Step meetings by connecting them to 12-Step volunteers.

FINDINGS:

Among patients with relatively less previous 12-Step meeting attendance, intensive referral was associated with more meeting attendance during follow-up than was standard referral. Among all patients, compared with those who received standard referral, those who received intensive referral were more likely to be involved with 12-Step groups during the 6-month follow-up (i.e. had provided service, had a spiritual awakening and currently had a sponsor). Intensive referral patients also had better alcohol and drug use outcomes at 6 months. Twelve-Step involvement mediated part of the association between referral condition and alcohol outcomes.

CONCLUSIONS:

The brief intensive referral intervention was associated with improved 12-Step group involvement and substance use outcomes even among patients with considerable previous 12-Step group exposure and formal treatment. Future 12-Step intensive referral procedures should focus on encouraging 12-Step group involvement in addition to attendance to benefit patients most effectively.

Comment in

PMID:
16669901
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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