Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment 2013;46(2):232-237. [doi: 10.1016/j.jsat.2013.08.021]
Amanda J. Abraham, PhD (University of South Carolina), Hannah K. Knudsen, PhD (University of Kentucky), Paul M. Roman, PhD (University of Georgia).
The National Drug Abuse Treatment Clinical Trials Network (CTN) is a practice-based research network that partners academic researchers with community based substance use disorder (SUD) treatment programs designed primarily to conduct effectiveness trials of promising interventions. A secondary goal of the CTN is to widely disseminate results of these trials and thus improve the quality of SUD treatment in the U.S. Drawing on data from 156 CTN programs, this study examined the associated between involvement in CTN protocols and overall treatment quality measured by a comprehensive index of 35 treatment services. Negative binomial regression models show that treatment programs participating in a greater number of CTN protocols had significantly higher levels of treatment quality, an association that held after controlling for key organizational characteristics. Given that protocol participation was positively associated with quality of treatment, the question remains about how to successfully translate this knowledge and skill base to community-based treatment programs that are not directly involved in clinical research. The CTN has undertaken a number of dissemination initiatives to do just that, including the NIDA/SAMHSA Blending Initiative and the CTN Dissemination Library, though there have been few studies examining the direct impact of these dissemination activities on the quality of treatment services within and outside the CTN.
Conclusions: At their core, practice-based research networks, such as the CTN, offer community based clinicians the opportunity to bring innovation to and to address problems encountered in everyday treatment practice. They also provide an opportunity to identify barriers to implementation and to tailor implementation strategies to meet the real world needs of community-based treatment programs. However there are significant strides to be made in disseminating knowledge, skills, and training to programs that do not actively participate in clinical research in the wider treatment community. These findings contribute to the growing body of research on the role of practice-based research networks in promoting health care quality. (Article (Peer-Reviewed), PDF, English, 2013)
Keywords: Adoption of interventions | Community health services | CTN Dissemination Library | CTN platform/ancillary study | Dissemination |
Health services research | National Treatment Center Study (NTCS) | NIDA/SAMHSA Blending Initiative | Research participation | Training | Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment (journal)
Document No: 1026, PMID: 24080073, PMCID: PMC3875300.
Submitted by CTN Dissemination Librarians, 10/7/2013.