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Bridging the Gap Between Science and Practice: The Effective Nationwide Transport of MST Programs in Norway

NCJ Number
Journal of Child & Adolescent Substance Abuse Volume: 17 Issue: 3 Dated: 2008 Pages: 93-109
Terje Ogden; Bernadette Christensen; Ashli J. Sheidow; Per Holth
Date Published
17 pages
This article describes the successful nationwide transport and evaluation of multisystemic therapy (MST) programs in Norway.
The first section of the article describes the background within which evidence-based practices (EBPs), including MST, were selected for adoption in Norway, as well as the performance of a multisite randomized clinical trial that examined the effectiveness of MST in Norway. The nationwide transport of MST programs for adolescents presenting serious antisocial behavior, including substance abuse, is best understood within the framework of Norway's broader adoption of EBPs. In 2003, the implementation and evaluation project at the Institute of Psychology, University of Oslo, evolved into the creation of the Norwegian Center for Studies of Conduct Problems and Innovative Practice. This Center also has taken the lead in disseminating other selected EBPs across Norway. The second major section of the article discusses adolescent substance use, treatment, and EBP research in Norway. Thus far, MST therapists in Norway have reported a positive response to the integration of contingency management (CM) for use with adolescent substance users. A second adolescent substance abuse treatment project is underway in which a large, heterogeneous sample of Norwegian practitioners will be trained in CM protocols for use with substance-abusing adolescents who are not in MST programs. The final section of the article addresses the challenges and viable solutions to the large-scale transport of an EBP. This section focuses on system-level and practitioner-level barriers and strategies. The article advises that the successful nationwide transport and evaluation of MST programs in Norway can be applied in the United States in the large-scale adoption and implementation of EBPs. 26 references