Effectiveness Bank web site Additions
Supported by  Alcohol Research UK web site   Society for the Study of Addiction web site
Effectiveness Bank additions 8 August 2017
Beginning where problem substance use and crime intersect, a study evaluating ‘stepped care’ in the court-supervised treatment of drink/drug-driving offenders, and a review of relapse to drug use and crime after prison-based programmes. Then preventive action among young people: can excessive drinking and cannabis use among 15–24-year-olds be moderated from the doctor’s surgery? Finally, a search for effective psychosocial remedies for “highly addictive” cocaine and amphetamine use.

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Achieve reductions in drink/drug-driving while conserving treatment resources
San Joaquin county in California has pointed the way forward to a system which conserves treatment resources yet achieves greater reductions in drink/drug-driving incidents. The first evaluation of systematically escalating offenders to treatment if they fail a less intensive sentence found significantly reduced recidivism and accidents, and evidence that related injuries also fell.

How can relapse to crime and drugs be prevented inside prisons?
Robust review of incarceration-based drug treatment suggests that policy makers are most likely to find success with programmes that intensively focus on the multiple problems of substance users. The strongest support was found for therapeutic communities.

Can a GP-led brief intervention reduce young patients’ substance use?
In French-speaking Switzerland researchers investigated whether training doctors to deliver a brief motivational intervention could reduce binge drinking and excessive cannabis use among 15–24-year-olds. Though a year later fewer young people were excessively using these substances, the brief intervention was no more effective than usual care. So why did it seemingly fail to deliver?

Psychosocial interventions for stimulant use disorders: what works?
Considerable interest in finding an effective treatment for “highly addictive” cocaine and amphetamines hasn’t quite been matched by evidence. Wrapping up what is known about psychosocial (rather than pharmacological) approaches, this notable review indicates that contingency management holds the most promise, but further study is needed to answer the big question – ‘is one psychosocial approach more effective than the others and in what circumstances?’

The Alcohol and Drug Treatment Matrices: core research selected and explored
Alcohol matrix for alcohol brief interventions and treatment
Drug matrix for harm reduction and treatment in relation to illegal drugs

The Drug and Alcohol Findings Effectiveness Bank offers a free mailing list service updating subscribers to UK-relevant evaluations of drug/alcohol interventions. Findings is supported by Alcohol Research UK and the Society for the Study of Addiction and advised by the National Addiction Centre.