Effectiveness Bank web site Additions
Supported by    Society for the Study of Addiction web site   Alcohol Change UK web site
Effectiveness Bank additions 10 September 2019
Published over the past month, studies exploring why ‘usual care’ might jeopardise the outcomes of women with a history of trauma, what happens after people leave the closed therapeutic environments of prison ‘recovery wings’ and residential treatment, and what is the best way to promote universal screening of primary care patients for risky drinking?

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‘We have to put out the fire before we rebuild the house’
How can ‘trauma-informed’ care move from being a value or philosophy held by select practitioners to an organisational framework for delivering treatment and support? Practitioners in England discuss, drawing on their experiences of working with women who frequently report substance use problems alongside histories of trauma and symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder.

‘Fundamental mismatch’ between problems prisoners face and level of support they receive
Recognising that prisons can cut off occupants from sources of social support and stability, while failing to cut off the supply of illicit drugs, dedicated ‘drug recovery wings’ were designed to cultivate a space within prisons where recovery looked possible. But what about when their prison sentence ended; did recovery wings return participants to the community feeling prepared and supported to continue on their recovery journeys?

Is the evidence for residential treatment getting better?
Though billed as one of the great hopes for recovery by UK governments, the evidence base for residential treatment has been underwhelming. A new review asks whether enough high-quality evidence has accumulated over the past five years to improve confidence in the effectiveness of residential treatment for people with substance use problems.

Major trial of ways to extend brief alcohol interventions
Could combinations of three strategies – training and support, financial reimbursement, and the opportunity to refer patients to a website – effectively and cost-effectively boost delivery of brief alcohol interventions in five European countries, including England? The aim was to find the best way to narrow the gap in primary care between the number of patients who could benefit from these interventions and those who receive them.

UPDATED Can the disappointing roll-out of brief alcohol interventions be cost-effectively turned around?
In a bid to reach the estimated ‘19 in 20 eligible patients’ not currently being screened for risky drinking in Europe, this study tested the cost-effectiveness of different levers to improve implementation of brief interventions. It identified optimally cost-effective strategies in England, the Netherlands and Poland – but does an ‘Achilles heel’ issue undermine the reliability of the calculations?

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The Alcohol and Drug Treatment Matrices: key 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 the Society for the Study of Addiction and Alcohol Change UK, and advised by the National Addiction Centre.