Hispanic parenting women in women-only versus mixed-gender drug treatment: A 10-year prospective study

Yih Ing Hser*, Samantha A. Hunt, Elizabeth Evans, Yen Jung Chang, Nena P. Messina

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The present study examined Hispanic substance-using parenting women treated in women-only (WO; n = 126) versus mixed-gender (MG; n = 853) programs and associated outcomes assessed 10. years after admission. Relative to other races/ethnicities of women admitted to the set of 40 California treatment programs in 2000-2002, Hispanic women were underrepresented in WO programs. Compared to those in MG programs, Hispanic women in WO programs demonstrated more severe treatment needs, indicated by their greater severity in drug and alcohol use, health and mental health problems, and criminal justice involvement at admission. They also had fewer economic resources (15% WO vs. 23% MG were employed, p< .05; 48% vs. 37% on public assistance, p< .05). Data based on administrative records covering 3. years pre-admission and 8. years post-admission showed that Hispanic women treated in WO programs had higher mental health service utilization over 8. years post-treatment admission, though no differences were found in trajectories of arrests and incarceration. In sum, long-term outcomes (in terms of criminal justice involvement) among Hispanic women in WO treatment were comparable to those in the MG treatment, despite greater service needs at admission. WO programs were able to engage more Hispanic women in use of mental health services. Future research should focus on factors limiting Hispanic women's participation in WO programs, which could suggest ways for improvement so as to benefit all Hispanic women in need of these special services.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)729-735
Number of pages7
JournalAddictive Behaviors
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2012 Jun
Externally publishedYes


  • Hispanic drug-dependent mothers
  • Long-term outcomes
  • Mixed-gender programs
  • Women-only programs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Toxicology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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