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Preliminary evaluation of a forensic dual diagnosis intervention

Marc Samuel Tibber (North London Forensic Service, Barnet, Enfield and Haringey Mental Health Trust, Enfield, UK)
Nicola Piek (North London Forensic Service, Barnet, Enfield and Haringey Mental Health Trust, Enfield, UK)
Sara Boulter (North London Forensic Service, Barnet, Enfield and Haringey Mental Health Trust, Enfield, UK)

Advances in Dual Diagnosis

ISSN: 1757-0972

Article publication date: 16 February 2015

Abstract

Purpose

This study is a post hoc service level investigation into the efficacy of a forensic dual diagnosis intervention. The treatment programme incorporated the principles of cognitive behavioural therapy and Motivational Interviewing, and was comprised of three stages: psycho-education into the links between mental/physical health, substance use and offending, the cultivation of coping strategies and relapse prevention planning. The paper aims to discuss these issues.

Design/methodology/approach

Treatment outcome was tracked using pre- and post- stage 1 and 2 measures, and included self-report questionnaires that probed service users’ readiness for change, motivations for treatment and perceived effectiveness of coping strategies (n=80 and 37 patients for stages 1 and 2, respectively). In addition, service users undertook a knowledge “quiz”, which probed information retention.

Findings

The results show that whilst psycho-education (stage 1) increased service users’ knowledge of key issues, this had no parallel effects on other measures. In contrast, completion of stage 2 led to an increase in external motivation for treatment, although this did not translate into a shift in service users’ readiness for change.

Research limitations/implications

These findings are consistent with the Motivational Interviewing literature and highlight the need for a shift in internalised motivation for treatment if change is to be elicited. Further, they point towards the viability of using self-report measures to monitor treatment outcome in a secure forensic setting.

Originality/value

These findings have a number of implications for the design and on-going evaluation of forensic dual diagnosis services, an area of research that is currently under-represented in the literature.

Keywords

Citation

Tibber, M.S., Piek, N. and Boulter, S. (2015), "Preliminary evaluation of a forensic dual diagnosis intervention", Advances in Dual Diagnosis, Vol. 8 No. 1, pp. 42-56. https://doi.org/10.1108/ADD-08-2014-0019

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2015, Emerald Group Publishing Limited