Screening and assessment of substance use disorders remain central administrative challenges, with great variation across service sites.
Existing research indicates that many individuals with substance use disorders will not seek treatment on their own accord (Danziger and Seefeldt, 2002), (Morgenstern et al., 2003), (Morgenstern et al., 2001), (McCrady and Langenbucher, 1996), (Weisner and Schmidt, 1995). Screening for substance use disorders and subsequent referral to appropriate treatment are therefore essential.
Existing data indicate that TANF agencies demonstrate great variation in how they detect, evaluate, and address alcohol and drug problems. While some state programs screen for substance use and some facilitate access to substance abuse treatment, many do not provide adequate training to TANF workers on how to identify alcohol and substance use disorders among TANF recipients. Some programs do not effectively address the myriad of other barriers facing substance-using welfare recipients (LAC, 2002).