Drug Courts and Process Improvement
Project Description

Cohort I: Between February 2010 and February 2011, the ten grantees participating in the collaborative completed improvement projects that reduced waiting times and no-shows and increased admissions and continuation. These changes generated cost-savings to the courts, treatment providers, and communities.

Sample results include:

  • Wait times declined an average of 38%. Seven of the eight courts that tested changes to improve wait times achieved reductions.
  • Admissions to substance abuse treatment increased 92–100% and referrals quadrupled. Four different courts across three grantee sites tested ways to improve their admission totals.
  • No-shows decreased by an average of 47%. Two courts worked on changes to eliminate appointment no-shows to pre-treatment or orientation appointments.

Participating sites used the NIATx model to improve substance abuse treatment services that promote lasting recovery among offenders. These sites also used process improvement methods to reduce criminal recidivism and probation violations. Coaches and participating court teams regularly commented on how the NIATx model offers a concrete and pragmatic way to address complex problems in the drug court environment, given the severity of client issues and multiple stakeholders involved.