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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 77009 Find in a Library
Title: Costs and the Chronic Drunkenness Offender
Author(s): J S Shire
Date Published: 1971
Page Count: 10
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study explored the financial costs of a halfway house for alcoholics in comparison to their legal and medical costs and examines some relationships between costs and drinking patterns.
Abstract: The halfway house offers alternative treatment for drunkenness offenders. In March and April 1970, 52 residents of Hope House in Boston responded to a questionnaire by providing information on the number of arrests for drinking or related offenses, the numbers of days spent in jails and hospitals, and the number of times hospitalized over the previous 2 years. Each man's legal (arrest, court, and jail) and hospital costs were calculated using information provided by the institutions involved. In addition, estimated earnings lost for the time spend in institutions were determined on the basis of the minimum wage. The results showed that for each man, the average total cost was $13,332, or $18.26 per day per man. The daily cost at Hope House is reported at $7.00, of which $4.27 is paid by the client. Thus, the cost to the State and private foundations is $2.73 daily, a substantial reduction in the social and financial liability of the chronic drunkeness offender. The findings also indicate that the highest cost group was comprised of younger men who had served time in jail over the 2-year period for drinking and related offenses. The next highest cost group was older men who had served time, and the lowest was comprised of old and young men who had not been in jail. An appended followup study performed in December 1977 indicates that of the 52 respondents, maintained their sobriety and were working in the field of alcoholism, 10 remained sober and worked in other fields, 9 had relapses but were working and attending Alcoholics Anonymous, 8 had died, and information on 9 was not available. Data tables are included. A reference list is not present.
Index Term(s): Alcoholics; Alcoholism treatment programs; Cost/Benefit Analysis; Halfway houses; Massachusetts
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