RECOMMENDATION 3. State authorities should provide financial incentives for collaborative investigations between CBOs and academically oriented research centers; and should support structures to foster broad participation among researchers, practitioners, consumers, and payers in the development of a treatment research agenda, including studies to measure outcomes and program operations.

RECOMMENDATION 4. CSAT and the states need to cooperate in the development of financial incentives that encourage the inclusion of proven treatment approaches into community-based treatment programs. This approach should include making additional funds available for implementing targeted treatment approaches.

To improve treatment, the following are considered critical areas to address:

  • Creating mechanisms to ensure the adoption of treatments proven to be effective and development of requests for proposals that support implementations of specific treatments within local community-based settings.
  • Providing support for the development of management information systems within community-based drug treatment programs, including consultation for system planning. These data systems should not be a one-way conduit to a state database but should also provide information to the treatment programs in a usable format and become the basis of public reports on outcomes.
  • Encouraging state substance abuse authorities to expand researcher, provider, and consumer participation in the development of licensing standards, staff development requirements, and initiatives to enhance consumer participation. Licensing standards provide the basis for monitoring treatment outcomes and processes and for managing progress toward desired patient outcomes. The best staff development standards require ongoing staff training and education (e.g., through publications, seminars, enrollment in continuing education, and attendance at training sessions that disseminate information on emerging developments in clinical care). Consumer participation standards provide consumers with information on state-of-the-art treatment techniques; also, outcomes measurement systems are best developed with input from families and patients.

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