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Subst Use Misuse. 2012 Jan;47(1):99-107. doi: 10.3109/10826084.2011.629705. Epub 2011 Nov 8.

Screening for addictive disorders within a workers' compensation clinic: an exploratory study.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, University of California Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California 90095, USA.


We conducted a cross-sectional study investigating the extent of addictive disorders within a workers' compensation (WC) clinic. We also examined the feasibility of substance abuse screening within the same clinic. In 2009 , 100 patients were asked to complete the World Health Organization's Alcohol, Smoking, Substance Involvement Screening Test (WHO-ASSIST) and the Current Opioid Misuse Measure (COMM). According to the WHO-ASSIST, we found that 46% of WC patients required intervention for at least one substance-related disorder (25% tobacco, 23% sedatives, 8% opioids), and according to the COMM, 46% screened positive for prescription opioid misuse. Importantly, the addition of this screening was brief, economical, and well accepted by patients. Further research should analyze the costs and benefits of detection and intervention of substance-related disorders in this setting.

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