This pilot study involved 40 adults participating in treatment through the Northern Sydney Magistrates Early Referral Into Treatment (MERIT) Program, Australia. Standardized health outcomes questionnaires such as the Severity of Dependence Scale (SDS), Kessler-10 (K-10), and Short Form (36) Health Survey (SF36), were administered to each participant on three different occasions: pre-treatment episode, post-treatment episode, and 3 months follow-up. The study aimed to determine whether any observed benefits to participants at completion of the MERIT program were continued 3 to 6 months post treatment. Although the findings indicate that some benefits achieved throughout the treatment phase were maintained at follow-up, the pilot study has a number of methodological limitations, and as such, further research is recommended.
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- Court diversion
- Substance use
- Treatment outcomes