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Initiation and engagement of alcohol and other drug dependence treatment

Substance use disorder causes more death, illness, and disability than any other preventable health condition. Once a patient acknowledges the need for treatment, it’s advisable to initiate treatment as soon as possible. Once a patient begins treatment, the more they engage services, the more likely they will complete a full course of treatment. The frequency and intensity of patient engagement predicts treatment outcomes.

Patient population: Adolescent and adult patients ages 13 and older diagnosed with a new episode of dependence on alcohol or other drugs.

Quality Goal: Ensure that patients initiate treatment for alcohol and other drug disorders through an inpatient admission, intensive outpatient encounter, or partial hospitalization within 14 days of diagnosis, and access two or more additional services within 30 days of the initiation visit.

What can you do for your patients who have substance use disorders?

  • Help your patients get into treatment within 14 days of diagnosis.
  • Let your patients know that completing treatment greatly increases the likelihood of positive outcomes.
  • Schedule two or more inpatient admissions, intensive outpatient visits, or partial hospitalizations within 30 days of treatment initiation.

Provider Resources

Patient Resources

24/7 Crisis Line

Let your patients know that they can get confidential help for mental health emergencies by calling
855-CRISIS-1 or 855-274-7471

Behavioral Health Consultation and Referral Line

Speak with an expert M-F 9-5 (ET)