Addictions Treatment for Older Adults: Evaluation of an Innovative Client-Centered Approach Kathryn Graham, Sarah J. Sounders, Margaret C. Flower, Carol Birchmore Timney, Marilyn Whîte-Campbell, Anne Zeidman Pietropaolo; New York: The Haworth Press, Inc.; 1 995; 244 pages, available in hardcover ($39.95) or softcover ($12.95)
This book describes the results of evaluation research conducted at the Community Older Persons Alcohol (COPA) program. Specifically designed for older adults who are experiencing problems related to the use of alcohol or other drugs, this program is a nontraditional approach to treatment. The program philosophy is "that counselors can help people reduce substance abuse and improve other areas of their lives by allowing each person to determine his or her own treatment needs" (preface). Clients are not required to admit that they have an alcohol or drug problem. The overall focus of the program is holistic. Chapters 1 and 2 describe the program and its rationale.
Case studies (36) were used in Chapter 3 to help the reader understand the client, the program, and the recovery process. Three types of older alcohol abusers emerge from the data. Chapter 4 describes the evaluation methodology. This is an important chapter for health professionals interested in outcomes research. The chapter verifies the need for an evaluation plan at the inception of any program implementation.
Chapters 5, 6 and 7 describe problem areas identified among COPA clients and older alcohol and drug abusers. A very good discussion relating these problems to current scientific literature flows through these three chapters.
The measurement of client outcomes, outcomes of treatment at COPA and variables associated with improvement is the focus of Chapters 8, 9 and 10. These outcomes are discussed in terms of the existing literature and general implications. The final chapter (11) summarizes findings and conclusions.
This is a well-written, interesting and informative text which provides information regarding an innovative approach to treating older adults who have alcohol or drug problems. It is a book for researchers and persons who work with the older individual who needs addictions treatment.