What Does Not Work? Expert Consensus on Discredited Treatments in the Addictions

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Evidence-based practice promotes those research-supported treatments that have proven effective, but it rarely identifies discredited treatments that are to be avoided. We sought to establish a professional consensus on discredited addiction treatments using Delphi methodology. A panel of 75 experts participated in a 2-stage study, reporting familiarity with 65 treatments and rating these on a continuum from “not at all discredited” to “certainly discredited.” We report their composite opinions and significant differences that occurred as a function of the panelists’ theoretical orientation. The results require careful interpretation, but do offer a cogent first step in identifying a professional consensus of discredited treatments for addictions.

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