This article updates the evidence base on outpatient behavioral treatments for adolescent substance use (ASU) since publication of the previous review completed for this journal by Waldron and Turner (2008). It first summarizes the Waldron and Turner findings as well as those from more recent literature reviews and meta-analytic studies of ASU treatment. It then presents study design and methods criteria used to select 19 comparative studies subjected to Journal of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology level of support evaluation. These 19 studies are grouped by study category (efficacy or effectiveness) and described for sample characteristics, methodological quality, and substance use outcomes. Cumulative level of support designations are then made for each identified treatment approach: ecological family-based treatment, group cognitive-behavioral therapy, and individual cognitive-behavioral therapy are deemed Well Established; behavioral family-based treatment and motivational interviewing are deemed Probably Efficacious; drug counseling is deemed Possibly Efficacious; and four integrated treatment models combining more than one approach are deemed Well Established or Probably Efficacious. The remainder of the article (a) articulates fidelity, mediator, and moderator effects reported for evidence-based approaches since 2008 and (b) recommends four enhancements to the prevailing business model of ASU outpatient services to accelerate penetration of evidence-based approaches into the underserved consumer base: pursue partnerships with influential governmental systems, utilize web-based technology to extend reach and control costs, adapt effective methods for linking services across sectors of care, and promote uptake and sustainability by emphasizing return on investment.
J Clin Child Adolesc Psychol. 2014. doi: 10.1080/15374416.2014.915550.