Effectiveness of selected Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB)-Supported Drug Facilities in the Philippines: Implication to the Enhancement of the Drug Treatment and Rehabilitation Programs and Services
The national government placed responding to drug dependency as one of its main priorities. One means to address this issue is through supporting drug treatment and rehabilitation centers (DTRCs) through DDB. As the number of individuals admitted into DTRCs has been increasing annually, the approach towards drug dependency has also begun to change. In the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on Drugs last 2016, drug dependency was found to be more effectively addressed from a public health rather than criminal approach, through evidence-based drug policies, social support, and access to healthcare.
The objective of the study is to determine the effectiveness of the programs and services of selected DDB-supported DTRCs.
The main purpose of this study is to review and provide evidence for the improvement of the operations of DDB-supported DTRCs. A formal review will help policymakers identify gaps between theoretical and actual rehabilitation practices, inefficiencies in delivery of DTRC services, and in the operation of DTRCs. Our findings may lead to the improvement of treatment and rehabilitation programs offered to Filipinos with drug dependency.
The study is a retrospective cohort involving (1) records review of drug dependents admitted in 2015 to the 4 selected DTRCs, complemented by (2) KIIs with facility staff and drug dependents currently admitted in the DTRCs. Sampling was stratified according to four geographic zones: Luzon, NCR, Visayas, and Mindanao for a total sample size of 250; drug dependents admitted in 2015 were recruited for the record review. Data was encoded, cleaned, and cleared of any identifiers by the DDB in order to protect the identities of the patients from the research team.
It was found that the completion of aftercare may not be the most appropriate output for the study because of the low aftercare completion rate. There were also inconsistent outcomes among DTRCs.
Patient-reported outcomes and Staff-observed outcomes were considered for this study because these were the information available. The latter deemed the rehabilitation program successful but could still be improved, though rehabilitation and aftercare were not treated as a continuous process.
Resources were completely used but lacking, with facilities unaware of DDB-support.
The study recommends that admissions for drug-unrelated reasons be monitored, and consistent outcomes and patient history be taken into account for rehabilitation program design. It is also recommended that resources, particularly financial and human, be provided to facilities while also requiring financial statements and liquidation reports from the facilities. Finally, comprehensive research into the aftercare process and offices is recommended for future studies.
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