Publication Details

Maffina, L., Deane, F. P., Lyons, G. C. B., Crowe, T. P. & Kelly, P. J. (2013). Relative importance of abstinence in clients' and clinicians' perspectives of recovery from drug and alcohol abuse. Substance Use and Misuse, 48 (9), 683-690.


This study collected data on drug and alcohol workers' (n = 55) and clients' (n = 139) perspectives on what constitutes a "recovery" from substance use disorder. Data were collected during 2010 from four residential faith-based treatment programs across the east coast of Australia. Self-report surveys specifically designed for this study were administered. Responses were compared using nonparametric test. Abstinence was seen as an important component of recovery but nonabstinent factors were also seen as having an important role. Staff placed more emphasis on clients taking responsibility for their problems and on the role of spiritual development. The importance of nonabstinence components was positively associated with a person's time in treatment and recovery. Implications, limitations, and future directions are noted.



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