Improving prediction of potential for treatment completion at Tai Aroha

Participant non-completion can be a major problem for treatment programmes. Staff may try to minimise non-completion by deciding who to select for treatment using professional intuition and referral information. It can be difficult for treatment staff to make these decisions regarding the potential for programme completion due to a lack of clear guidelines about what information to consider. This lack of clear guidelines can increase susceptibility to biases, and lead to unreliable and potentially inaccurate decisions. Research has identified ‘simple rules’ that are tools to aid decision-making quickly, effectively, and consistently. Therefore, using past treatment data, we1 aimed to identify predictors of programme completion vs. non-completion at Tai Aroha—a residential treatment programme based in Hamilton—to explore whether a “simple rule” can be developed from information readily available at the time of referral, to support staff decision-making when selecting offenders to attend treatment, with the potential to increase programme completion. We were successful in the development of a simple rule to aid Tai Aroha staff selection decisions. The implications, and limitations of our rule and our study are discussed, and future research relating to simple rules are identified.
Type of thesis
The University of Waikato
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