The Use of Evidence-Based Standards for Addiction Treatment

Field of Work: Promoting the use of quality standards for the treatment of substance abuse conditions

Problem Synopsis: In 2007, the National Quality Forum (NFQ) published voluntary consensus standards on 11 evidence-based practices in substance abuse treatment. To encourage their implementation, the field needed a strong dissemination effort and translation of the standards into measures that treatment programs could use to track the quality of their work.

Synopsis of the Work: The Open Society Institute led a project to build awareness of the NFQ standards for substance abuse treatment and develop and test measures to track the adoption and use of at least two standards.

Key Results

The term "NQF standards" is now commonly heard in the lexicon of the addiction treatment field.

The NQF standards were the focus of workshops and conferences that reached some 3,000 thought leaders in the addiction treatment field.

When the National Association of State Alcohol and Drug Abuse Directors (NASADAD) tested the usability of operational measures for medication-assisted treatment of substance abuse, however, it found that "states' technological capacity does not seem ready for widespread adoption."