Office and Rehab Programs for Addiction and Related Disorders Prescribe Medication to Prevent Cravings and Relapse to Only 5 Percent of Patients

Evaluating office-based treatment of addiction

Researchers at the Philadelphia-based Treatment Research Institute compared the therapeutic practices of office-based clinicians in private practice (e.g., psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers or, counselors) who treat patients with substance use disorders to the therapeutic practices of clinicians in an outpatient substance abuse treatment program at a community mental health clinic.

The study continued at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, Robert Wood Johnson Medical School after the principal investigator relocated there.

Key Findings

  • Program-based clinicians were far more likely to use urine drug screens than office-based clinicians (55% versus 15% of their patients).

  • Office-based clinicians were more likely than program-based clinicians to treat patients for one year or more (32% versus 14% of their patients).

  • Both office-based and program-based clinicians reported prescribing medications to prevent drug cravings or relapse to only 5 percent of their patients.