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Contingency Management

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Contingency Management is a type of treatment used in the mental health or substance abuse fields. Patients are rewarded (or, less often, punished) for their behavior; generally, adherence to or failure to adhere to program rules and regulations or their treatment plan.

Contingency management is frequently used in methadone maintenance treatment. Patients are permitted to "earn" take home doses of their methadone dose in exchange for increasing, decreasing, or ceasing certain behaviors. For example, a patient may be given one take home dose per week after submitting negative drug screens (generally via urine testing) for three months. (It is worth noting that take home doses (or "bottles") are seen as desirable rewards because they allow patients to come to the clinic less often to obtain their medication.)

Other types of treatment programs may provide patients with vouchers for things such as food or clothing in exchange for objective proof of abstinence from a certain drug or from all psychoactive substance.

In behavioral therapy, contingency management includes techniques such as Shaping, time-out, making contracts between therapist and patient, and token economies.

See alsoEdit

Cognitive behavioral therapy

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