To support the free and open dissemination of research findings and information on alcoholism and alcohol-related problems. To encourage open access to peer-reviewed articles free for all to view.

For full versions of posted research articles readers are encouraged to email requests for "electronic reprints" (text file, PDF files, FAX copies) to the corresponding or lead author, who is highlighted in the posting.


Monday, July 8, 2013

Have Addictive Disease Treatment Advocates Killed People?

When the Rand Report on alcoholism treatment was released, indicating that many alcoholics reduced their drinking following treatment rather than abstaining, outraged treatment advocates attacked the report, its researcher-authors, and any suggestion that alcoholics could become social drinkers.  As I wrote in Psychology Today in 1983:
"One study that brought on such opposition was the 1976 Rand Report. The Rand Corporation was commissioned by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism to analyze data that had been collected at the NIAAA’s treatment centers. Initially examining 2,339 male alcoholics, and following up 597 of them 18 months later, Rand researchers found that 24 percent had been abstaining for a substantial period of time, compared with 22 percent who were drinking normally.

On the morning that the report was released, the National Council on Alcoholism denounced it as being ‘dangerous, misleading, and not scientific.’ Thus began a campaign against the Rand Report and its results for which it is difficult to find a recent parallel in science. In response, the Rand researchers conducted an extensive four-year follow-up study. They broadened their sample, scrutinized their definitions, analyzed subgroups of subjects, and extended the period over which subjects were examined. Their conclusions upheld the viability of controlled drinking for all types of alcoholics. This version of the Rand Report suffered the unusual fate of having its results reinterpreted by its own funding body, the NIAAA, to the effect that ‘those who were dependent on alcohol cannot go back to normal drinking.’"   > > > >   Read More