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Satisfaction with substance use treatment and 12-step groups predicts outcomes.

Kendra MS, Weingardt KR, Cucciare MA, Timko C. Satisfaction with substance use treatment and 12-step groups predicts outcomes. Addictive Behaviors. 2015 Jan 1; 40:27-32.

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INTRODUCTION: Satisfaction is a critical component of patient-centered care, yet little is known about the degree to which patient satisfaction is linked to subsequent outcomes, especially in substance use disorder (SUD) treatments and 12-step groups. The current study assessed the degree to which satisfaction with Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) outpatient SUD treatment and with 12-step groups, both measured at 6 months after treatment initiation, was associated with additional treatment utilization and better substance-related outcomes during the next 6 months, that is, up to 1 year after treatment initiation. METHODS: Participants were 345 patients entering the VA SUD treatment program. RESULTS: More satisfaction with treatment and with 12-step groups at 6 months was associated with less alcohol use severity and more abstinence at 1 year. More treatment satisfaction was related to less subsequent medical severity, whereas more 12-step group satisfaction was related to less subsequent psychiatric severity. More 12-step group satisfaction was related to subsequent increases in 12-step group attendance and involvement. A single item assessing overall satisfaction appeared best related to subsequent outcomes. CONCLUSIONS: Satisfied SUD treatment patients and 12-step mutual help members appeared to have better subsequent service utilization patterns and treatment outcomes. SUD treatments can improve outcomes by monitoring and enhancing patient satisfaction.

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