Alcoholics Anonymous: Cult or Cure
Harvard researcher, psychiatrist and leading chemical dependency expert, George Vaillant, reviewed the research on effective treatments for alcoholism and assessed recovery in two community cohorts of adolescent males, followed from 1940 through the present day.
He concludes that AA is effective because of four different factors
inherent to the program that have been widely shown to reduce relapse
prevention for addiction: (1) external supervision, (2) substitute
dependency, (3) new caring relationships and (4) increased spirituality.
He adds that AA serendipitously follows the principles of cognitive
behaviour therapy for relapse prevention.
Citation: Vaillant GE. Alcoholics Anonymous: cult or cure? Australia & New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry. 2005 Jun; 39 (6): pages 431-6. [email protected]