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Home > Drug Treatment Matrix cell E4: Treatment systems - psychosocial therapies.

Drug and Alcohol Findings. (2018) Drug Treatment Matrix cell E4: Treatment systems - psychosocial therapies. London: Drug and Alcohol Findings. 6 p.

PDF (Drug matrix cell E4)


The Drug Matrix is concerned with the treatment of problems related to the use of illegal drugs by adults (another deals with alcohol-related problems). It maps the treatment universe and for each sub-territory (a cell) lists the most important UK-relevant research and guidance. Across the top columns move from specific interventions through how their impacts are affected by staff, the management of the service, and the nature of the organisation, to the impact of local area treatment systems. Down the rows are the major intervention types implemented at these levels.


What is this cell about?

The roles of the ‘psychosocial’ therapies introduced in cell A4 in building a cost-effective mix of services across an administrative area which offers problem drug users attractive access points and appropriate options for moving between services or using them in parallel.

Creating a local treatment system involves commissioning, contracting and purchasing decisions to meet local needs in the context of resource constraints and national policy. At this level, research is rarely of the ‘gold standard’ randomised-controlled-trial format. Unlike intervention programmes, whole treatment systems are not easily manipulated by researchers based on the equivalent of a toss of a coin, leaving us largely reliant on studies of how things work out naturally. These have to try to adjust for the multiple influences and differences between areas which obscure the impacts of the features researchers are attempting to assess. Such studies will often include but not focus on psychosocial services, making the corresponding cell on treatment systems as a whole also of relevance.

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