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This study, supported by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, offers an in-depth evaluation of treatment provided by federally funded Alcoholism Treatment Centers. An input-output model is formulated to test treatment effects and their relationship to various etiological conceptions of alcoholism. The data base includes national samples of alcoholics interviewed at 6 months and at 18 months after admission to treatment, as well as comparison data on drinking patterns in the general population. Client characteristics that may be of prognostic significance in alcoholism, such as social background, ethnicity, marital status, employment, and previous drinking, are examined in detail. Using a definition of remission that includes both abstention and drinking behavior within a range specified as normal, the study finds that 70 percent of those treated are in remission at 6 and at 18 months following entry. These remission rates are quite similar regardless of the type of treatment given. Moreover, remission rates observed among such treated alcoholics are higher than those observed among persons who remain untreated, 50 percent of whom were in remission. Thus, the fact of treatment appears to be more important than the specific type of treatment.

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