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Dual disorders—combined severe mental disorders and substance use disorders—were barely recognized two decades ago. As a result of the high prevalence and serious consequences of these disorders, they have received considerable attention over the last two decades. Knowledge has accumulated about dual disorders and their treatment, and treatment providers may now consider numerous options for clinical interventions and program designs. In this article, we offer guidelines concerning these options. We review the current knowledge about dual disorders and the results of recent research on the assessment and treatment of these disorders. We present treatment principles, recommendations on the components and organization of dual disorders programs, and suggestions for dealing with clinical issues that remain controversial. We conclude with comments on the demands of the managed care environment and the heightened importance of continued research in this area. (Authors)
Psychiatric Quarterly
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A program of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration, Center for Mental Health Services