The Development of the Commitment to Lifetime Alcohol Abstinence in the Czech Republic: Grounded Theory
Objective: Lifetime abstinence is often an explicit goal in the treatment of alcohol addiction. However, there is a lack of empirical studies on the development process of patients’ commitment to lifetime abstinence. In this study, patient experiences during a 13-week in-patient treatment programme based on Apollinaire’s treatment system, which is widespread in the Czech Republic, were explored. Methods: Patients of the Psychiatric Hospital in Brno participated either in focus groups (N=14) or in regular individual semi-structured interviews every two weeks (N=13). Data triangulation was ensured by including data from individual interviews, focus groups, and patients’ diaries. A grounded analysis was conducted. Results: A Final theory is presented through a sequential model of 4 distinct phases that describe the change of patients’ commitment to lifetime abstinence. The central concept is building self-esteem supported by a process of improving selfefficacy and receiving positive feedback. Conclusion: The research findings are discussed within existing empirical findings in the process of addiction recovery, and research and clinical implications are provided. The results highlight the importance of an individually tailored therapeutic approach, with each model phase serving as a clue guiding clinicians towards a therapy focused on patients’ needs during the development of the commitment to lifetime abstinence.