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J Subst Abuse. 1994;6(3):345-54.

Program factors influencing client satisfaction in alcohol treatment.

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  • 1Office of Medical Education Research and Development, Michigan State University, East Lansing 48824.


There is little documentation about how the union of self-help and professional treatment services influences client treatment satisfaction. This study examines the relationship of treatment characteristics indicative of program size, staffing patterns, Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) influence, and staff recovery status to client satisfaction. Thirty-six public substance abuse treatment programs participated in this study. At outpatient programs, satisfaction was related to program size, and the number of paraprofessional and medical staff; satisfaction was unrelated to AA influence on treatment. For residential clients, AA influence on treatment and AA beliefs held by staff were consistently related to satisfaction; factors related to program size and staffing patterns were independent of satisfaction. The results question the appropriateness of self-help interventions in all settings, and emphasize contextual differences in outpatient and residential programs.

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