Community Resilience and Recovery Initiative: Final Evaluation Report. Substance Abuse Services and Outcomes


Finally, we examined any changes in self-reported substance use for those individuals whose records clearly indicated that they received substance use disorder services from the grantee. Here we focus only on Fall River and Union City youth (see Table 4-5). For Lorain, the data indicated only one discharged client who had received substance use disorder services. The numbers for Fall River are also small, so they should be interpreted with caution. For example, the number of clients who reported drinking five or more alcoholic beverages in one sitting and who received substance use disorder services increased by one between intake and follow-up. Can we conclude that of the 21 clients at that site who participated in substance use disorder services, one actually began binge drinking as a result of participating in services? It is unlikely, but this "finding" suggests the reader should interpret any findings suggesting causality with caution.

TABLE 4-5 Substance Abuse Services and Related Outcomes

  Fall River Union City Adults Union City Youth
  Intake     Follow-up     Intake     Follow-up     Intake     Follow-up  
N= 21 21 58 58 131 131
Using Alcohol 6 7 27 18 43 3
   Alcohol to intoxication (5+ drinks one sitting)   3 4 12 6 7 0
   Alcohol to intoxication (4 or fewer drinks) 4 4 5 3 12 0
Using Illegal Drugs 7 3 21 6 74 10
   Cocaine/crack 0 0 11 3 0 0
   Marijuana/hashish 4 2 13 5 68 9
   Heroin 2 0 0 0 0 0
   Oxycontin/Oxycodone 0 0 0 0 1 0

In Union City, there are more complete cases for both adults and youth who received substance use disorder services. For both populations we see a large number of clients who reported using alcohol in the previous 30 days at intake, with a sharp drop in the number who continuing to use alcohol at follow-up. At follow-up, there is a decline in the number of adults who reported binge drinking and the number of youth who reported binge drinking drops to 0 in both categories. These data suggest a positive impact of program participation on adult and youth alcohol use, but may also be the result of participants responding the way that they thought staff would want particularly in how youth answered the follow-up questions. Similarly we see a significant decline in both populations of the number who reported using illegal substances at follow-up. Again, this is an encouraging finding, although it should be interpreted cautiously.

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