Breaking Free Group has innovated and evidenced an effective form of Computer-Assisted Therapy for alcohol and drug dependence. This allows substance misuse services to expand the scope and reach of the interventions they deliver, free up valuable staff resources, operate in a more efficient, paperless and connected way, and harness the skills and lived experience of peer mentors in supporting people’s recovery.

Service providers report that our technology-enhanced recovery approach makes service users 50% more likely to exit treatment successfully and 60% less likely to re-present to service within one year.

Breaking Free from Substance Use (Community)

This clinically-proven digital programme enables service users in community-based alcohol and drug treatment settings to achieve and maintain long-term recovery from substance dependence through self-management or Computer-Assisted Therapy delivered by clinicians and practitioners.

It enables Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for alcohol and drug dependence to be delivered in a clinically-robust, consistent and scalable way, and seamlessly integrates other proven therapeutic approaches such as mindfulness, relapse prevention and motivational enhancement.

The programme contains a structured assessment and a wide range of evidence-based psychosocial interventions that comply with National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guidance on the treatment of drug misuse, alcohol use disorders and co-morbid mental health problems such as anxiety and depression.

Treatment sessions delivered using Breaking Free from Substance Use can be recorded as a structured psychosocial intervention on the National Drug Treatment Monitoring System (NDTMS).

Service users can access Breaking Free from Substance Use 24/7 on any device. It targets over 70 substances, including alcohol, opiates, new psychoactive substances and prescribed medications of abuse. And it provides them with an extensive toolkit of psychoeducation, practical resources and positive coping skills to support their long-term recovery.

In addition to the UK version of the programme, there are fully localised versions for implementation in Canada (in both official languages) and the United States.


The online programme is complemented by a Companion app for Android and iOS devices. This further strengthens relapse prevention by alerting service users when they approach high-risk situations and ‘nudging’ them to carry out positive activities that boost their mood and provide structure in their daily routine.

To maximise the scalability, treatment integrity and therapeutic impact of Breaking Free from Substance Use, we have pioneered a delivery method using Computer-Assisted Therapy (CAT). Clinicians and practitioners are trained and supported via an e-learning platform, which also contains modules for organisational leads and service managers on how to optimise implementation of the programme.

Commissioners and services receive a dashboard that monitors the reach and impact of the intervention in real time. This allows services to demonstrate how they are using digital technology to respond to emerging drug trends, expand treatment choice, and increase access to recovery-oriented interventions for their service users, including outside their normal operating hours.