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Patient Feedback Effectiveness Study

This study has been completed.
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Paul Crits-Christoph, University of Pennsylvania Identifier:
First received: November 24, 2008
Last updated: January 18, 2012
Last verified: January 2012

November 24, 2008
January 18, 2012
November 2006
November 2008   (final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
clinician average weekly caseload patient-rated therapeutic alliance [ Time Frame: 12 weeks ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
Same as current
Complete list of historical versions of study NCT00798044 on Archive Site
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Patient Feedback Effectiveness Study
Patient Feedback Effectiveness Study

The purpose of the study is to determine if a semi-automated quality improvement system that provides addiction counselors with feedback on their average treatment satisfaction and therapeutic alliance (as rated by patients currently in treatment) is superior to no feedback in 32 community-based outpatient addiction treatment clinics.

Quality improvement (Ql) methods are a cornerstone of business and healthcare management throughout the United States yet there have been few studies of Ql interventions in addiction treatment settings. The proposed study tests the effectiveness of one Ql system - Patient Feedback (PF) - at increasing outpatient group therapy attendance and self-reported abstinence. The feasibility and acceptability of PF was established in a six-site study conducted within the National Drug Abuse Treatment Clinical Trials Network. In the proposed study, 32 community-based outpatient treatment programs with approximately 250 clinicians will be randomly assigned to PF, or usual clinic practices. In the PF condition, every week fro 12 weeks clinic patients are invited to complete a 12-item, self-administered survey in which they rate therapeutic alliance and treatment satisfaction, and report past week substance use. These anonymous surveys are faxed by clinic staff to a University of Pennsylvania data center where a custom software application converts the surveys into feedback reports and posts them to a password protected website. Clinicians can access their caseload feedback reports and aggregated reports for the whole clinic; supervisors can only access the aggregated clinic reports. On a monthly basis staff meet as a team to review the feedback reports and develop Ql plans intended to yield improvements in select Ql indicators. The PF website and the monthly PF e-newsletter provide social recognition, clinical resources, and a virtual community for participating clinicians. After 12 weeks, participants in both conditions complete follow-up measures and then both groups are given open access to PF for 12 additional months. During "sustainability phase" staff usage of the PF website is monitored. Alternate versions of the PF Survey are introduced during the sustainability study, including one that monitors HIV risk behavior. The rapid processing of surveys enables near real time feedback to clinic staff. Organizations may share their feedback reports with funding sources, regulatory agencies, policy makers, and other stakeholders. This centralized, semi-automated feedback system eases fulfillment of accreditation requirements and as such, reduces the cost of clinic operations.

Not Provided
Allocation: Randomized
Endpoint Classification: Efficacy Study
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: Open Label
Substance Use Disorders
  • Behavioral: Other: quality improvement feedback system
    Surveys patients regarding treatment experiences.
  • Behavioral: Patient Feedback
    Weekly feedback reports provided to counselors
  • Experimental: Feedback to counselors
    substance abuse counselors received feedback reports on their average performance and on the average performance of the clinic as a whole. Feedback reports contained information on average alliance, treatment satisfaction, and drug/alcohol use.
    • Behavioral: Other: quality improvement feedback system
    • Behavioral: Patient Feedback
  • No Intervention: Treatment as Usual
    No feedback reports were provided in this arm.
Not Provided

*   Includes publications given by the data provider as well as publications identified by Identifier (NCT Number) in Medline.
April 2009
November 2008   (final data collection date for primary outcome measure)

Inclusion Criteria:

  • program: adult, outpatient, non-methadone maintenance substance abuse treatment programs
  • clinician: must be leading at least one weekly group with minimum of 5 patients
  • must be working at least 20% time at facility

Exclusion Criteria:

  • clinics with fewer than 5 clinicians who conduct weekly group counseling
  • clinics in which fewer than 50% of clinicians agree to participate
18 Years and older
Contact information is only displayed when the study is recruiting subjects
United States
R01DA020799, R01DA020799
Paul Crits-Christoph, University of Pennsylvania
University of Pennsylvania
National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)
Principal Investigator: Paul Crits-Christoph, Ph.D. University of Pennsylvania
University of Pennsylvania
January 2012

ICMJE     Data element required by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors and the World Health Organization ICTRP