Motivation for change among drug users and justice: a literature review

Itamar José Félix, Paulo Renato Vitória Calheiros


The Transtheoretical Model is an important theory in the study, evaluation, and intervention regarding motivation for changing behavior related to psychoactive substances, including individuals entangled in the justice system. The objective was to systematically review the literature addressing populations involved with the legal sys­tem and studies that are deeply related to the Transtheoretical Model. We have resear­ched the following databases: Medline, SciELO, PePSIC and Web of Science, for papers published in the last 16 years. Seventeen papers were identified, indicating this is a field seldom studied, though the papers presented promising results. This practice is used worldwide as a re-socialization factor. Studies have emerged in Brazil addressing juve­nile offenders, assessing motivation and motivational interventions. Further research is needed, while the legal system needs to invest more in treatment and subsequent mo­tivation for treatment.

Keywords: Transtheoretical model; justice; change stages; psychoactive substances; treatment.

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ISSN 1980-6906 (on-line)