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Home > Drug treatment matrix cell D5: Organisational functioning - safeguarding the community.

Drug and Alcohol Findings. (2017) Drug treatment matrix cell D5: Organisational functioning - safeguarding the community. Drug and Alcohol Findings Drug Treatment Matrix .

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The Drug Treatment 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? As well as concrete things like staff, management committees, resources, and an institutional structure, organisations have links with other organisations, histories, values, priorities, and an ethos, determining whether they offer an environment in which staff and patients/clients can maximise their potential. For these and other reasons, agencies differ in how keenly and effectively they seek and incorporate knowledge and implement evidence-based practices. This cell is about the role organisational contexts play in treatment organised and/or funded by criminal justice and other authorities which offer or impose treatment, not because it has been sought by the patient, but because it could cut crime or otherwise benefit the community. At this distance from the preoccupation with interventions, research is scarce and rarely of the gold-standard, randomised controlled trial format. Instead, researchers usually look for patterns in what naturally happens rather than manipulating it to test the consequences. Those patterns may reflect the presumed cause and effect mechanisms, but they may instead reflect unmeasured variables which randomisation eliminates from the effectiveness equation. In the expectation that organisational influences in these settings may not differ too much from those in criminal justice and child protection, we can also refer you back to the relevant cells in respect of harm reduction, generically across treatment, medical treatments, and psychosocial therapies.

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