Should Treatment Goals Be Incentivized?

Should Treatment Goals Be Incentivized?

Contingency Management (CM) is a new strategy being used for some people in recovery from addiction. It is a method of therapeutic support which provides incentives for people to achieve recovery goals. They receive tangible rewards when they reach milestones, including a number of therapy sessions or consecutive negative urine tests. The question is whether treatment goals should be incentivized and whether this is helpful or harmful to people in recovery.

Does CM Work

CM typically uses either prize or voucher-based systems. Under the voucher system, people get a set amount of money when they reach goals. The amount increases after each achievement. People can use the money for services they choose. The prize method allows people to draw from a bowl of prizes after they achieve a goal. Looking at whether this method works depends on whether there are positive long-term or short-term gains to be had.

Positive Side

CM programs work for a wide array of people struggling with addiction. It is beneficial for people seeking treatment for problems with alcohol, smoking, cocaine, and opioids, as well as improving adherence to exercise or medication schedules. Advances in technology provide options for CM. With modern tools, people don’t have to use apps to monitor people. Breath-monitoring is common. Remote CM tools make the method convenient and cost-effective for both people and organizations.

Future of CM

This new form of addiction treatment is being adopted by treatment providers. The U.S. Veterans Affairs Health Care System and the U.K. National Health Service are among those implementing CM programs. The hope is to provide a source of treatment for millions who suffer from substance abuse.

Rewarding people can be a helpful thing but i can also be a way to incentive behavior they should otherwise do regardless. The challenge is then weaning off this system since life is not going to hand someone a lollipop every time they meet a goal. It is a difficult challenge to overcome but it is helpful at first and maybe that is what matters most. Finding what works initially then shifting gears as necessary.

The Palmetto Center is based on a Therapeutic Community model. We help people learn how to live free of addiction. Our community support provides structure while trained counselors offer life skills training and therapeutic techniques to help you move past addiction. Our program provides special focus for professionals including chiropractors, nurses, doctors, lawyers, and more who need help with addiction recovery. Call us to find out more: 866-848-3001.