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COLLECTION 2016 HTM file
The common core of therapy
‘Collections’ are customised Effectiveness Bank searches not available via the standard options in the search pages. Lists entries relating to ‘Dodo bird’ findings that all bona fide therapies tend to have similar effects. Across mental health and behavioural problems, such findings have turned attention to the ‘common factors’ shared by therapies rather than how they differ.
HOT TOPIC 2016 HTM file
The therapeutic potential of patients and clients
One of our hot topics offering background and analysis on important issues which sometimes generate heated debate. The recovery agenda emphasises the transformation of problem substance users into solutions to those problems through peer support and involvement in their own care – but perhaps at a deeper level, the patient or client has always been the author of their own recovery.
REVIEW 2011 HTM file
The efficacy of disulfiram for the treatment of alcohol use disorder
Given effective supervision from family or clinicians to help ensure patients keep taking the tablets, this first systematic synthesis of research finds that on average the drug disulfiram, which produces an unpleasant physical reaction to drinking, does act as an aid to abstinence in the treatment of alcohol dependence.
This intervention based on housing first led to significantly greater reductions in drinking problems after 14 months, but not in problems with other substances.
HOT TOPIC 2016 HTM file
Individualising treatment: an obviously ‘good thing’?
‘Hot topics’ offer background and analysis on important issues which sometimes generate heated debate. Individualisation might seem an obvious and basic prerequisite to substance use treatment, but in fact services have often striven for uniformity.
HOT TOPIC 2016 HTM file
Is it futile to match alcohol treatments to the patient?
‘Hot topics’ offer background and analysis on important issues which sometimes generate heated debate. Even if overall one type of therapy for problem drinking is no better than another, surely this is just because certain therapies worked best with certain patients? Expectations that ‘matching’ would lead to improved outcomes were dashed in what was intended to be the definitive test, but it would be premature entirely to dismiss the idea.
Swiss study of brief alcohol interventions with a representative sample of heavy drinking young men exposed the determining influence on later drinking of the practitioner’s competence in motivational interviewing and how they behave in the session.
A study exploring the challenges of defining and measuring ‘outcomes’ and ‘success’ in substance use treatment environments, from the perspective of staff and participants in two different US harm-reduction counselling programmes.
This US study found that among people with serious mental illness and a history of criminal justice involvement, an intervention intended to foster citizenship through peer mentoring, education and activities, reduced alcohol and drug use and enhanced quality of life and satisfaction with social, leisure and work activities.
‘Social norm’ interventions which aim to reduce consumption by telling heavy drinkers how their drinking compares to their peer-group norm have a patchy record, but this British study suggests for students they might be improved by ranking against peers (eg, ‘You drink more than 80% of students’) rather than comparing how many units of alcohol they consume.
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