Denying Treatment to Drug and Alcohol-Dependent Patients
Batey, Robert G.
Addiction. 1997 Sep; 92(9): 1189-1193.
There has been a concerted move in the West to reduce health care expenditure and multiple moves have been made to achieve these cost reductions. Many approaches have been taken including the restriction of services to subsets within the population. Drug and alcohol dependent patients have often been targeted as individuals and as groups who should not be seen as having equal access to certain forms of therapy. In this article it is argued that many of these decisions are inappropriate and in many instances they are not based on evidence which suggests that patients who are dependent may do just as well as non-dependent patients with some forms of treatment. It is argued that clinicians should regard each individual patient separately and make decisions that are appropriate to the clinical setting rather than taking a policy decision to restrict treatment to dependent individuals.
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