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Assessing the helping alliance and its impact in the treatment of opiate dependence.

Authors
  • Belding, M A
  • Iguchi, M Y
  • Morral, A R
  • McLellan, A T
Type
Published Article
Journal
Drug and Alcohol Dependence
Publisher
Elsevier
Publication Date
Oct 25, 1997
Volume
48
Issue
1
Pages
51–59
Identifiers
PMID: 9330921
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

This study assesses the relationship between the patient-counselor helping alliance (HA) and progress in methadone maintenance treatment. Questionnaire measures of HA were administered to 57 patients 1 and 3 months after admission. Three-month HA measures (especially counselors' ratings) predicted reductions in drug use as measured by weekly urinalysis results and 6-month self-report data. HA was unrelated to treatment retention or improvement in psychiatric symptomatology. Moreover, controlling for urinalysis results in the previous month rendered insignificant the correlations between 3-month HA and subsequent drug use. Thus, this evaluation of the HA's unique contribution to the prediction of outcome suggests that the development of a positive HA may be more a marker of treatment progress than a necessary precursor of positive outcomes in the methadone maintenance treatment setting.

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