Survey Design for TANF Caseload Project: Summary Report and Recommendations. Recommended Measures

08/28/2002

Considering the practical implications of drug or alcohol dependency as a barrier to work, it seems important to measure these barriers especially well. Several states are considering, or have already implemented, programs that address alcohol and substance abuse among welfare recipients; yet there is little accurate data on the actual prevalence among this population. Moreover, diagnosing rather than screening for alcohol and drug dependency would be consistent with our approach to the assessment of mental health conditions in this survey. Because mental health conditions and alcohol/drug dependency so often coexist, it is desirable to take a similar approach to their measurement. For these reasons and others, we strongly recommend the two modules of the CIDI-SF for measuring alcohol and drug dependency.

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