LACES Frequently Asked Questions

LACES Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  1. What is LACES?

LACES stands for the “Los Angeles County Evaluation System: An Outcomes Reporting Program.”  It is a county-funded evaluation involving all county-funded alcohol and other drug treatment programs.


  1. Who supports this evaluation?

The Los Angeles County Alcohol and Drug Program Administration (ADPA) sponsors the evaluation.  In addition, the evaluation reports to an advisory committee.  As part of LACES, UCLA Integrated Substance Abuse Programs (ISAP) is providing research and evaluation expertise, data analysis and support, training and technical assistance to the Los Angeles County alcohol and other drug treatment system.  LACES is designed to evaluate the alcohol and other drug (AOD) treatment/recovery system by reporting on client outcomes and program performance.


  1. Who is on the advisory committee?

Currently, there are two advisory committees or work groups that LACES works with.  These include the LACES Advisory Workgroup, whose members consist of providers, ADPA staff, and community advocates.  Their task is to review, comment on, and approve planned evaluation activities and to ensure that the evaluation activities do not interrupt treatment program services any more than necessary.  In addition, there is a second workgroup that focuses specifically on the current pilot project.  This group consists solely of those providers who are contributing data to the pilot project.


  1. What does the evaluation entail?

The evaluation involves the collection and analysis of information from a number of sources including the treatment participants, the programs where treatment is provided, and the agencies that house the programs.  This information is analyzed and compiled into reports that are then distributed to ADPA.  Sometimes these reports are also made available to providers via the LACES website.


  1. What kind of extra work will I need to do for this evaluation?

All treatment programs must complete the Los Angeles County Participant Reporting System (LACPRS) admission and discharge questions for all participants.  The majority of the information used for the evaluation originates from this system.


Currently, the only other additional work is completed by those programs involved in the current pilot project.  Occasionally, LACES will submit a survey or request an interview with a provider, but generally speaking there is no additional work required of the provider.


  1. Will the information and reports reflect the progress of each provider individually or the attempts of the county as a whole?

The information gathered will be analyzed and reported by program type and system-wide level for the entire county.  Currently, individual program level information is only available to the executive directors of those programs, ADPA, and UCLA.


  1. How is a comparison going to be made between different modalities?

Currently, there are no plans to make comparisons across different treatment modalities.


  1. How often will providers get feedback?  Reports?

As part of the evaluation, LACES has developed a number of reports that are available to the provider.  These reports include the LACES Site Report, the Clinical Narrative Report and the Discharge Outcome Report.


The LACES Site Report includes information on client outcomes and also provides information on some program performance measures.  These reports are available to all large program sites (more than 80 admissions/year) on a quarterly basis and to every program site on an annual basis.  The Clinical Narrative report provides a summary of the clients admission information gathered through the LACPRS.  This report is available through the LACPRS system once all of the LACPRS admission questions have been answered.  The Discharge Outcome Report is includes information about the client when he or she was admitted to treatment, when he or she was discharged from treatment and also provides information on how the treatment participant has improved during treatment.  Providers remark that the Discharge Outcome Report is particularly useful when discharging a client and a report is needed for the criminal justice system or for transfer purposes.


  1. What measures are taken to protect participant confidentiality?

All identifiable information collected for the purposes of the evaluation requires informed consent; however, currently LACES only collects and analyzed de-identified client data.  The information collected from the LACPRS admission and discharge questions is first stripped of identifying information as dictated by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and Code of Federal Regulations, Protection of Human Subjects (CFR part 46).  Therefore all information included in the evaluation was either consented to by the treatment participant or does not include any information that can be used to identify the treatment participant.


  1. Will participants who drop out after 2 weeks be included?

All participants who complete the intake (LACPRS admission questions) will be included in the evaluation program; however, the length of stay is always considered when data are analyzed or reports are composed.


  1. Who should I contact if I have a question?

First, check our Web site at or contact on of the staff listed on the website.



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