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Health Services for Drug and Alcohol Treatment Essay (Critical Writing)

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Evaluation of the Need for Additional Research

The article by McCarty, Roman, Sorensen, and Weisner (2009) focuses on the issues related to health services research in the context of alcohol and drug abuse. According to the authors, health services research is a multidisciplinary field, which includes problems of organizing, managing, financing, and delivering high-quality care (McCarty et al., 2009). It is stated that patient information systems supported the research of treatment processes and outcomes performed by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) and National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA) (McCarty et al., 2009). The history of the development of these institutions is discussed in the article; however, the primary scope of the paper is the observation of future perspectives in the sphere of health services research. Therefore, it is essential to overview the author’s perspectives on this issue in order to evaluate the significance of addiction research in the area of substance abuse prevention.

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McCarty et al. (2009) identify the following areas of concern: “research on the quality of care, adoption, and use of evidence-based practices (including medication), financing reforms, and integration of substance abuse treatment with primary care and mental health services” (p. 197). However, it is of high importance to mention that there is a considerable need for addiction research in the area of prevention of substance abuse. It is appropriate to mention that among six categories, which are identified in order to regulate the investigation in health services research, there are three categories that concur with the purpose of addiction research: (1) effectiveness and outcomes, (2) organization and management, and (3) methodology (McCarty et al., 2009). Thus, the need for efficient addiction research is evaluated as highly significant.

Critical Analysis of the Research Methodology

Further, it is essential to critically analyze the research methodology of the article by McCarty et al. (2009). It should be stated that the piece of writing under discussion does not represent the work of the highest academic quality. As the authors point out, the primary purpose of their article is to give a historical overview of the development of health services research in the context of substance abuse treatment. The authors did not use any solid research methodology since their work is vastly based on a descriptive literature review. Also, a considerable part of the article is dedicated to the author’s personal reflections on their experience in the area of concern. Accordingly, no research questions or hypotheses are proposed to guide the development of the authors’ work. However, it should be noted that the author’s conclusions based on their experience are still valuable as the opinions of professional healthcare system researchers.

Comparing the article under discussion with the research by Thomas, Allen, Phillips, and Karantzas (2011), it is not difficult to identify strengths and weaknesses of the work by McCarty et al. (2009). The article by Thomas et al. (2011) is organized according to high scientifical standards: it is based on solid quantitative methods, the results are reliable, and the authors profoundly elaborate on the topic of gaming addiction and its prevention. Another example of well-written research on the topic of substance abuse and its prevention is the article by Volkow, Koob, and McLellan (2016). Therefore, it is appropriate to notice that the study by McCarty et al. (2009) has numerous significant weaknesses, which were mentioned in the previous paragraph. Among the study’s strengths, it could be suggested that the authors provided an elaborated historical overview of the question as well as their experience in the area of concern.

References

McCarty, D., Roman, P. M., Sorensen, J. L., & Weisner, C. (2009). Health services research for drug and alcohol treatment and prevention. Journal of drug issues, 39(1), 197-208.

Thomas, A. C., Allen, F. L., Phillips, J., & Karantzas, G. (2011). Gaming machine addiction: The role of avoidance, accessibility and social support. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 25(4), 738-744.

Volkow, N. D., Koob, G. F., & McLellan, A. T. (2016). Neurobiologic advances from the brain disease model of addiction. New England Journal of Medicine, 374(4), 363-371.

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