Talk to the Veterans Crisis Line now
U.S. flag
An official website of the United States government

Health Services Research & Development

Go to the ORD website
Go to the QUERI website

HSR&D Citation Abstract

Search | Search by Center | Search by Source | Keywords in Title

Longer length of stay is not associated with better outcomes in VHA's substance abuse residential rehabilitation treatment programs.

Harris AH, Kivlahan D, Barnett PG, Finney JW. Longer length of stay is not associated with better outcomes in VHA's substance abuse residential rehabilitation treatment programs. The journal of behavioral health services & research. 2012 Jan 1; 39(1):68-79.

Dimensions for VA is a web-based tool available to VA staff that enables detailed searches of published research and research projects.

If you have VA-Intranet access, click here for more information vaww.hsrd.research.va.gov/dimensions/

VA staff not currently on the VA network can access Dimensions by registering for an account using their VA email address.
   Search Dimensions for VA for this citation
* Don't have VA-internal network access or a VA email address? Try searching the free-to-the-public version of Dimensions



Abstract:

Are longer stays in Veterans Health Administration (VHA) substance abuse residential rehabilitation treatment programs (SARRTPs) associated with better substance-related outcomes? To investigate, up to 50 new patients were randomly selected from each of 28 randomly selected programs (1,307 patients). The goal was to examine if patient and program average length of stay (ALOS) were associated with improvement on Addiction Severity Index (ASI) Alcohol and Drug composite scores in covariate-adjusted, multi-level regression models. Patients in programs with ALOS greater than 90 days tended to have more mental health treatment prior to the index episode and less severe substance-related symptoms, but more homelessness. At follow-up, programs longer than 90 days had the least improvement in the ASI Alcohol composite and significantly less improvement than programs with ALOSs of 15 to 30 and 31 to 45 days (both p < 0.05). Therefore, in VHA SARRTPs, ALOS greater than 90 days cannot be justified by the substance use disorder severity of the patients served or the magnitude of the clinical improvement observed.





Questions about the HSR&D website? Email the Web Team.

Any health information on this website is strictly for informational purposes and is not intended as medical advice. It should not be used to diagnose or treat any condition.