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Int J Addict. 1984 Dec;19(8):885-902.

Follow-up difficulty with substance abusers: predictors of time to locate and relationship to outcome.


A sample of 76 alcoholics and 31 drug abusers who had been inpatients at a Veterans Administration Medical Center were followed up 6 months after termination of treatment. Of this population, 100 (93.5%) were located, and additional data were recorded as to both the length of time required for location and the sources which proved useful in the process. Two-thirds of the sample were located within 1 month and most before the fourth month. Multivariate analyses revealed that criminal history, longer time in treatment, and previous treatment each were independent predictors of difficulty in location. Personal addresses provided by the subjects at intake were crucial in the tracking process, as well as female relatives named by addicts. The time to locate a subject was not generally related to outcome. Employed subjects were somewhat harder to find, and those drinking daily-or not at all-were easier to locate.

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