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Home > Supporting adults bereaved through substance use with the 5-Step Method intervention.

Templeton, Lorna (2020) Supporting adults bereaved through substance use with the 5-Step Method intervention. London: Alcohol Change UK.

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The aim of the study was to pilot a brief structured intervention (based on an existing evidence-based model, the 5-Step Method) for adults bereaved through substance use. In so doing, the project brings together two areas of work; namely, developing evidence-based support for families affected by a loved one’s substance misuse in their own right, and research on the experiences and needs of adults bereaved through substance use. 

Key findings 

  • An existing evidence-based intervention, the 5-Step Method, can be adapted for adults bereaved through substance use, and delivered in a substance misuse treatment service.
  • Family members have benefitted from the intervention in a range of ways, and they have appreciated the specialist and compassionate support they have received.
  • There have been several short-term impacts from the research, and concerted efforts are underway to maintain and extend the service. However, this was a small pilot, and the evidence, while encouraging, is limited and qualitative. Further research is certainly needed.

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