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Outcome Assessment of Correctional Treatment (OACT)

NCJ Number
Date Published
January 2003
57 pages
Publication Series
This summary report presents the results of a study designed to measure the recidivism of probationers following treatment in a 6-month modified therapeutic community (TC).
Correctional populations have soared during the past decade, with many inmates suffering from serious drug and alcohol addictions. Many TCs have emerged within correctional facilities to address this epidemic problem. Additionally, community-based, residential modified TCs have also been developed to serve the needs of probationers and parolees. In order to measure the effectiveness of these community-based programs, the authors examined recidivism rates for 406 Texas Department of Criminal Justice probationers who were admitted to community-based residential modified TCs in 1998. Of these 406 probationers, 290 graduated from the program while 116 dropped out before completion. This group was compared to a group of 100 felony probationers who were eligible for the community-based residential modified TC but declined to participate. The 1- and 2-year recidivism rates for the comparison, graduate, and dropout groups revealed that the treatment dropouts were more likely to be re-arrested for a serious felony within 2 years of leaving the TC. The graduates of TC were significantly less likely to be arrested during the 2 years following the TC than the comparison group who refused treatment. However, logistic regression analysis that controlled for pre-existing group differences revealed that the TC program had a more limited impact on recidivism rates than was at first thought. The TC graduates were only slightly less likely to be re-arrested within 2 years of leaving the program than the other two groups. The authors also reported on social functioning, revealing that low social functioning scores were associated with a higher probability of dropping out of TC treatment early. Treatment dropouts exhibited higher hostility scores and showed a larger increase in hostility scores between the time of intake and the end of the 30-day orientation phase of treatment. Additionally, re-arrest within 2 years of treatment was associated with unemployment before treatment, criminal history, and hostility ratings. In conclusion, the authors suggest that future research continue to attempt to uncover the best treatment models to treat the legions of offenders who suffer from drug and alcohol addictions. References, tables

Date Published: January 1, 2003