The note of follow up program:
Maybe one question would occupy the mind of all people who are related to addiction, including addicted person, family and specialized in this filled. The first question after hospitalizing the addicted and decreasing stresses of treatment is that how long the treatment would continue? And what will happen after that?
Answering to this question is so hard because dominoes of addiction are so wide. Everyone who knows the addiction understands this point that entering to treatment is not the end of the story and it would be the difficult progress.
From previous years in Iran, standardized progresses for a useful treatment were defined. Can we say that the end of using drugs is the end of the treatment? Or we should pay attention to different aspects? Different methods of treatments like medical treatments, self-assessment groups and so on have some aspects for ending the treatment progress but again the above question is asked after treatment, what should the client do?
In the shortest definition of addiction two points are important, first addiction is chronic second it is recurrence. It seems that addiction like every chronic and recurrent diseases needs following up. Remain point is that after treatment who should follow up the client. For entering to this discussion you should answer to these questions:
Who is the addicted? And suffered what damages?
What is the field of the treatment of addiction?
Is the society ready for reentering of him?
Are he and his family trained?
By answering these questions, it would seem that follow up program has the important role, and without it the treatment progress is unfinished and it grantee the success of treatment. This subject is designed in two steps, in step one the client is in the treatment progress. With specialized training to the client and his family in this stage we help the client to control the negative feelings and support the cooperation of him. The addicted person and his family should completely know the addiction diseases and its side effects and he should cooperate in his treatment, sometimes the concern of judgments or labeling to him causes that the addicted does not attend to the treatment center on time. Paying attention to other problems like economics, physical, mental, family, legal issues are really important in this stage. So the addicted and his family should know that this disease is reversible and it needs awareness and continues observer and it is equal for everyone.
Social workers are the most important members of treatment team who are really helpful in this progress especially in the next phase that he leave the treatment center. The most important role of social work and the difference of it from other specialties are following up the client.
Social worker knows the treatment progress ends in the phase that the individual has the independency and ready to return to normal life without any helper. In the treatment progress and follow up programs the role of social worker is really important. He/she can help individual in these issues:
Understanding the problem and refer to other helping parts based on necessity.
Following up the individual in the case of HIV and other physical disease
Financial support based on necessity
Tele communication with the client and his family
Providing temporary housing for poor clients
Helping in learning skills
Social actions and preparation
Understanding other risky circumstances
I should mention that therapists of addiction should have specialized vision and they should not enter the judgment.
Golfam Seif – Social Worker
Pouna Social Work Clinic
“Iranian social worker’s media campaign on social protection of recovered”
The note of follow up program: