Structured Relapse Prevention Program for Chinese Patients in Hong Kong with Comorbidity of Substance Use and Mental Health Disorders: A Feasibility Study

Chris K.H. Ngai, Cynthia S.T. Wu, Lorna K.P. Suen

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review


The prevalence rate of substance misuse is high among people with mental illnesses. This study adopted an individualized structured relapse prevention program (SRPP) by using an integrative motivational interviewing (MI) and cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) approach for people with dual diagnosis, i.e., substance use disorder (SUD) comorbid with mental illnesses, in a Chinese population. This study assessed the feasibility of the SRPP and its preliminary effects to provide directions for future wide-scale trials. The program consisted of eight one-to-one interviews conducted weekly. Each interview lasted 1 h. MI was scheduled in the first session, followed by six sessions of CBT and a final session for concluding remarks. The high recruitment and retention rates of the participants indicated that the SRPP was feasible in Hong Kong. Preliminary results reflected a significant increase in self-efficacy to abstain from substance misuse and a decrease in the psychiatric symptoms among the participants with SUD. These effects were sustained 3 months after the intervention. A large sample size and the inclusion of a control group are warranted in future trials to determine the causal relationship between treatment and effect.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)56-65
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Psychoactive Drugs
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2020


  • cognitive-behavioral therapy
  • Drug abuse
  • dual diagnosis
  • mental disorders
  • motivational interviewing
  • relapse

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Psychology(all)

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