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National Voluntary Consensus Standards for the Treatment of Substance Use Conditions: Evidence-Based Treatment Practices: Evidence-Based Treatment Practices

Over the past 15 years, scientific knowledge has increased substantially regarding the use of effective, evidence-based therapies for treating people with substance use conditions. As is true with other areas of health care, the increase in scientific knowledge has not been accompanied by the consistent implementation of proven methods of treatment. With the understanding that consensus on effective treatment practices can focus the development of measures of quality, the National Quality Forum (NQF), with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), undertook this project as one step to address the need for performance measures for the treatment of substance use conditions. Building upon recommendations from a 2004 NQF workshop, this report assembles a set of detailed, fully specified, evidence-based treatment practices based on seven practices recommended at the workshop, evaluating those practices and pursuing consensus around them. The treatment practice recommendations include target outcomes and additional specifications for what a practice entails. Consistent with the priorities established, these practices are applicable across a broad range of populations (e.g., adolescents and adults), settings (e.g., primary care and substance use treatment settings), and providers (e.g., counselors and physicians).

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