The drug use question was in the same format as the question about alcohol use, but included a list of drugs to serve as "fill" items for the question. Thus, it read, "During the past 30 days, how many days have you use any of the following?" which included marijuana, crack/cocaine, heroin, as well as a variety of prescription pain killers (e.g., Percocet, Tylenol 3). With the exception of the youth, these numbers are proportionately quite small. For example, in Fall River, of the 245 clients for whom ASSIST had both an intake and follow-up interview, only 29 clients (less than 12 percent) at intake reported having used an illegal substance in the previous 30 days. In Lorain, 53 of 278 (19 percent) reported illegal substance use at intake, and among Union City adults only 7 percent so indicated. Appropriately (given the program focus), about half of the Union City youth reported having engaged in illegal drug use in the 30 days prior to the intake interview.
Notably, these numbers are significantly different at 6-month follow-up, as shown in Figure 4-7. Once again, although the potential remains for clients to provide socially desirable responses when asked about drug use, these numbers are very impressive as the client populations' substance use behaviors decreased over time.
FIGURE 4-7 Percent of clients Reporting Substance Abuse at Intake and Follow-Up