Development & Validation of a Brief Assessment of Recovery Capital (BARC-10) For Alcohol & Drug Use Disorder

Original Research From the Recovery Research Institute

Drug and Alcohol Dependence | AUGUST 1, 2017 | VOLUME 177, PAGES 71-76

It has been long established that achieving recovery from an alcohol or other drug use disorder is associated with increased stress. To enhance the chances of recovery, recovery capital, a variety of psychological, physical, social, and environmental supports are needed to help individuals manage these high levels of stress.

In the past, researchers hoping to study recovery capital, needed to use a 50-item measure (the Assessment of Recovery Capital [ARC]), with 10 sub-scales. The length of the original measure, was a barrier to its use in busy clinical and recovery support settings. But now, researchers at the Recovery Research Institute, using Item Response Theory Models, have developed a briefer version of the measure, that enhance the measure’s utility and value to the research community.

Lead researcher Dr. Corrie Vilsaint of the Recovery Research Institute explains:

Many tools available for the assessment and on-going monitoring of substance use disorders use a deficit-based approach to capture the absence of disease symptoms related to remission. The recovery movement has created a both a focus and responsibility to identify quality of life improvements, beyond mere abstinence, as an actionable target inclusive of the recovery process.

This brief 10-item questionnaire was rigorously developed to deliver a strength-based assessment of resources used to initiate and sustain recovery. As payers and other stakeholders in the field continue to scrutinize the recovery construct it is important to have measurable indicators of recovery progress that go beyond self-reported abstinence, urine and blood tests. This version is a great contribution to the field of addiction science, and will have tremendous utility for researchers, clinicians, & recovery support services.

What inspired this latest research?

“We are trying to save lives and help make them well worth living.” – Dr. Corrie Vilsaint



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