Effectiveness Bank bulletin 15 February 2013

Latest additions to the Effectiveness Bank focus on treatment caseload and other statistics from the UK plus updated alcohol treatment guidelines, which seem fine in theory, but in practice treatment of whatever quality is accessed by few who might benefit from it. From the USA, ways to get more (in this case, young) people to benefit. Finally, international experts offer options for what on the evidence would best safeguard the community from the consequences of illegal drug use.

Addiction treatment numbers fall in Scotland but hepatitis C is on the rise
Drug misuse statistics for Scotland in 2010/11 including treatment and criminal justice caseloads and health impacts. Reveals a fall in numbers entering treatment and in the proportion who inject, but a steep increase in newly diagnosed hepatitis C infections among injectors.

Unmet need undermines contribution of alcohol treatment in England
More problem drinkers started specialist treatment in 2010/12 but more successfully completed it, slightly reducing overall numbers; scope for many more to benefit from treatment is indicated by low levels of referral from primary medical services.

UK clinical guidance on treating dependent drinkers
Assessment by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) of what evaluation research means for alcohol dependence treatment in Britain, distinguished by comprehensive reviews of the literature. Updated analysis cites evidence update released in January 2013 which was not considered to require changes to the original 2011 guidance.

Young treatment refusers can be engaged in treatment
Comprehensive US-focused review addresses the need to enrol more young problem substance users in treatment even if they at first refuse, validated methods for identifying such young people and engaging them in treatment, and ethical and financial considerations involved in implementing these methods.

Top-level evidence-based advice on national illegal drug policy
Review of relevant research by an international team of leading researchers offers policymakers guidance on the interventions most likely on the evidence to achieve national policy aims in respect of illegal drug use.

Sent by the Drug and Alcohol Findings Effectiveness Bank to alert you to site updates and UK-relevant evaluations and reviews of drug/alcohol interventions. Managed by DrugScope, Alcohol Concern and the National Addiction Centre. Supported by Alcohol Research UK and the J. Paul Getty Jr. Charitable Trust.