Transportation and retention in outpatient drug abuse treatment programs
Department of Medicine, Division of Preventive and Behavioral Medicine
Adult; *Ambulatory Care; Female; Humans; Male; Patient Compliance; Patient Dropouts; *Substance Abuse Treatment Centers; Substance-Related Disorders; Transportation of Patients; Treatment Outcome
Behavioral Disciplines and Activities | Behavior and Behavior Mechanisms | Community Health and Preventive Medicine | Preventive Medicine
To determine whether certain types of transportation assistance improve outpatient treatment retention beyond thresholds shown to have therapeutic benefits, we analyzed data from 1,144 clients in 22 outpatient methadone maintenance (OMM) programs and 2,031 clients in 22 outpatient drug-free (ODF) programs in the Drug Abuse Treatment Outcomes Study (DATOS), a national, 12-month, longitudinal study of drug abuse treatment programs. Directors' surveys provided information about provision of car, van, or contracted transportation services or individual vouchers/payment for public transportation. Chart-abstracted treatment retention was dichotomized at 365 days for OMM and 90 days for ODF. Separate multivariate hierarchical linear models revealed that provision of car, van, or contracted transportation services improved treatment retention beyond these thresholds for both OMM and ODF, but individual vouchers or payment for public transportation did not. Future research should validate whether car, van, or contracted transportation services improve retention and other treatment outcomes in outpatient drug abuse treatment.
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Citation: J Subst Abuse Treat. 2001 Sep;21(2):97-103.
Friedmann, Peter D.; Lemon, Stephenie C.; and Stein, Michael D., "Transportation and retention in outpatient drug abuse treatment programs" (2001). Preventive and Behavioral Medicine Publications and Presentations. 196.