1Department of Mental Health and Psychiatric Nursing, Faculty of Nursing, Thammasat University, Klong Luang, 12121 Pathumthani, Thailand
Background Patients with drug addiction experience negative effects, not only regarding their own personal health, including cognitive and psychosocial abilities, but also on the part of their family members and society at large. Objectives This quasi-experimental research examined the effect of an intervention program for patients, along with their families, on improving the holistic health status of patients after discharge. Patients and Methods Ninety patients were selected and were paired according to gender, age, education, and type of drug addiction. Simple random assignment was used to allocate each subject in the experimental (N = 45) and control (N = 45) groups. A standardized health assessment questionnaire (SF-36V2), covering eight study areas of holistic health status in terms of physical, mental, and social functioning, was administered. The experimental treatment, or the three-stage intervention program, consisted of an individual counseling program and a relapse prevention training program for patients, together with a family participation program. Descriptive statistics were calculated and chi-square test was used to compare the characteristics of two groups. Also t-test was applied to compare the mean scores of health status. Results The patients that received treatment in the experimental group had a higher mean score (before mean = 105.76 and after mean = 109.42; P = 0.013) regarding the difference in their holistic health status than those in the control group (before mean = 107.09 and after mean = 106.56; P = 0.713). This result showed that a three-stage intervention program helped improve the patients’ holistic health status. Conclusions It is suggested that for addiction rehabilitation and relapse prevention, health practitioners should not only provide an intervention program to their patients, but they should design a program for families to participate in the treatment as well so that patients can function at a higher level of wellness. Therefore, the family participation program should be reinforced as part of the therapeutic intervention.