Sunday, 17 August 2008

Reflections on Treatment

Firstly, if you were waiting for my Blogs in the second part of the week, my apologies. My three youngest children have come to stay with me for their summer holidays, before moving abroad with their mother. I will also be wanting to spend as much time as possible with them this week.

Last week, I reflected on recovery and pointed out that formal treatment was one form of help that can help a person move along their path to recovery. I attach a short document which outlines some other thoughts about treatment.


Pavel Nepustil said...

Hi, David! Thanks for the document, I am just trying to understand better the exact meaning of "treatment" in English: to what amount does it have a medical connotation? I am asking, because the word that we use to translate "treatment" in Czech Rep., "lecba" - has very strong medical connotation and for lay person, "doctor" is the immediate person that he associates it with. I had hard time when talking to some clients to explain that they do not even have to meet "medical doctor" in some drug treatment program.

And can I have another question? What do you think of putting the treatment of various substances together? Would you think taht we need to differ between some substances or that it is not reasonable and that we should offer one treatment for use of cocaine, heroin, alcohol, nicotine, marihuana and so on?

If you have time to write me quick answer, I would appreciate it. Thanks! Pavel

Anonymous said...

'Positive outcomes from treatment would be enhanced if appropriate post treatment support systems were available'.

How very true David. In countries with diverse populations and cultures such as Singapore and Switzerland,such support is not only available, but in some, if not all cases mandatory.

The treatment outcomes in both countries are freely available in the public domain, together with relevant crime statistics and 're-offending' rates.

The differences between those two countries and those which do not have such enlightened policies are staggering.

Sadly, both countries have been castigated for their the treatment protocols, which are principally abstinence focused, and for their after care treatment, on the grounds that they contravene the human rights of 'users'

David Clark said...

Yes, excellent point Pavel about the connotations of the word 'treatment'. I've often thought about this problem. I'd like to get a full debate going on this and have thought about doing it for the new website. Ask people to write 150 words max on what they consider to be treatment. Good idea?
I'll come back on both these issues later.

Anonymous said...

Thanks David. One of the biggest obstacles I encountered in practice is that "treatment" is often regarded by clients (and sometimes by some professionals) as the bit where someone is carted off to somewhere where they are not allowed to drink, take drugs or have sex for 6 weeks, and anything else on either side is therefore disregarded. I recently received an e-mail from a treatment centre asking if I could advise about accommodation for someone they were discharging after 4 months, because he lapsed after receiving a diagnosis that he had a brain tumour requiring an operation. I replied with some advice, but also reminded the professional of the processes their client had undertaken to get treatment, the appointments kept, the assessments and engagement in community based treatments, and since he had completed 4 months of abstinent treatment I ventured to suggest it was a pity he now found himself cast adrift. With no hint of irony the reply I received indicated that the situation had resolved itself because the guy was sofa surfing with friends until his op.So your view that treatment needs to be more widely defined in terms of a whole process, before during and after the time when an individual attends a residential addiction treatment centre is helpful. I hope one day that I will be instrumental in setting up a place for people waiting for other treatment services as well as places for people whose service has been terminated without them being offered othern options