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Is treatment for alcohol use disorder associated with reductions in criminal offending? A national data linkage cohort study in England.

Willey, H, Eastwood, B, Gee, I and Marsden, J (2016) Is treatment for alcohol use disorder associated with reductions in criminal offending? A national data linkage cohort study in England. Drug and Alcohol Dependence. ISSN 1879-0046

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BACKGROUND: This is the first English national study of change in criminal offending following treatment for alcohol use disorder (AUD). METHODS: All adults treated for AUD by all publicly funded treatment services during April 2008-March 2009 (n=53,017), with data linked to the Police National Computer (April 2006-November 2011). Pre-treatment offender sub-populations were identified by Latent Profile Analysis. The outcome measure was the count of recordable criminal offences during two-year follow-up after admission. A mixed-effects, Poisson regression modelled outcome, adjusting for demographics and clinical information, the latent classes, and treatment exposure covariates. RESULTS: Twenty-two percent of the cohort committed one or more offences in the two years pre-treatment (n=11,742; crude rate, 221.5 offenders per 1000). During follow-up, the number of offenders and offences fell by 23.5% and 24.0%, respectively (crude rate, 69.4 offenders per 1000). During follow-up, a lower number of offences was associated with: completing treatment (adjusted incident rate ratio [IRR] 0.82; 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.79-0.85); receiving inpatient detoxification (IRR 0.84; CI 0.80-0.89); or community pharmacological therapy (IRR 0.89; CI 0.84-0.96). Reconviction was reduced in the sub-population characterised by driving offences (n=1,140; 11.7%), but was relatively high amongst acquisitive (n=768; 58.3% reconvicted) and violent offending sub-populations (n=602; 77.6% reconvicted). CONCLUSIONS: Reduced offending was associated with successful completion of AUD treatment and receiving inpatient and pharmacological therapy, but not enrolment in psychological and residential interventions. Treatment services (particularly those providing psychological therapy and residential care) should be alert to offending, especially violent and acquisitive crime, and enhance crime reduction interventions.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: 11 Medical And Health Sciences, 17 Psychology And Cognitive Sciences
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare. Criminology
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA1001 Forensic Medicine. Medical jurisprudence. Legal medicine
Divisions: Public Health Institute
Publisher: Elsevier
Related URLs:
Date Deposited: 26 Feb 2016 09:35
Last Modified: 04 Sep 2021 13:22
DOI or ID number: 10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2016.01.020
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/2996
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