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Addiction and Responsibility$
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Jeffrey Poland and George Graham

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780262015509

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262015509.001.0001

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Contingency Management Treatments of Drug and Alcohol Use Disorders

Contingency Management Treatments of Drug and Alcohol Use Disorders

(p.225) 9 Contingency Management Treatments of Drug and Alcohol Use Disorders
Addiction and Responsibility

Nancy M. Petry

Sheila M. Alessi

Carla J. Rash

The MIT Press

This chapter discusses contingency management (CM) treatments and how effective they are in the treatment of substance abuse disorders. Although drugs have a reinforcing effect that helps in perpetuating their use, environmental contingencies can be called upon to reduce substance-using behaviors. Aside from its efficacy, the background of CM treatments is described, stressing on the capability of environmental contingencies to decrease drug use. Surprisingly, despite its efficacy, CM and other similar interventions are very rarely adopted in clinical settings, due, in part, to practical considerations. A philosophical chasm is also reflected in this research-practice disconnect. Finally, the most common objections to CM techniques are presented, showing how such arguments may be hindering adoption of effective treatments for this very important public health issue.

Keywords:   contingency management, CM, substance abuse disorders, reinforcing effect, environmental contingencies, substance-using behaviors, public health issue

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