, Volume 45, Issue 6, pp 427-438
Date: 19 Sep 2009

Predictors of Referral to Supported Employment Among Consumers with Co-Occurring Mental and Substance Use Disorders

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Clinical trials demonstrate that Supported Employment is effective in assisting persons with severe mental illness in obtaining competitive employment. However, little is known about the factors related to consumers’ decisions to pursue employment, especially for consumers with co-occurring substance and mental disorders. This study examines the demographic, socioeconomic and illness characteristics of consumers referred for Supported Employment services. Consumers were drawn from Integrated Dual Diagnosis Treatment programs in four community mental health agencies. Study participants included 113 consumers referred for Supported Employment services and 78 randomly selected non-referred consumers as the comparison group. Results suggest that consumers who have past work experience are more likely to be referred to Supported Employment, while consumers who perceive themselves as disabled or who are diagnosed as substance dependent are less likely to be referred to Supported Employment. Implications for agency practice and future research are discussed.