Learning from disappointing outcomes: An evaluation of prevocational interventions for methadone maintenance patients

Authors: Lindstrom, L. E., Benz M. R., & Doren, B.
Year Published 2004
Publication Substance Use and Misuse
Volume 39
Number 13
Pages 2287-2308
Publisher Informa Healthcare

Employment rates in the drug-dependent population are typically low. Obtaining employed work is viewed as basic to successful treatment and recovery. (p. 2288)


The goal of the study was to evaluate three pre-vocational training programs designed to be delivered as adjunct services for patients at methadone maintenance clinics.


The setting was various community mental health centers.


A total of 417 subjects were enrolled at five methadone clinics between March 1995 and April 1998. They were enrolled in the study after completing 30 days of treatment at the clinics to ensure they were stable and familiar with clinic routines to effectively participate.

Data Collection

Employment data was collected at 6-month and 12-month follow up interviews.


The employment outcomes of the 3 program groups were compared.


None of the three models produced significantly greater employment or better overall rehabilitation.


This study suggests that closer integration of pre-vocational training with treatment, individualizing efforts to meet training needs, and providing support during job-finding and early job-holding might improve program effectiveness. (p. 2288)

URL http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15200244
Populations Male & Female
Outcomes Employment acquisition | Full-time employment | Part-time employment
Research Design Mixed methods
Peer Reviewed Yes