METHODS: A pragmatic, randomised controlled, open feasibility trial delivered in two services for young people in the UK. Potential participants are aged 12-18 years referred for drug or alcohol problems to either service. The main purpose of this study is to demonstrate the feasibility of recruiting young people to a specifically developed family and social network-based intervention. The feasibility and acceptability of this intervention will be measured by recruitment rates, treatment retention, follow-up rates and qualitative interviews. The feasibility of training staff from existing services to deliver this intervention will be explored. Using this opportunity to compare the effectiveness of the intervention against treatment as usual, Timeline Follow-Back interviews will document the proportion of days on which the main problem substance was used in the preceding 90-day period at each assessment point. The economic component will examine the feasibility of conducting a full incremental cost-effectiveness analysis of the two treatments. The study will also explore and develop models of patient and public involvement which support the involvement of young people in a study of this nature.
DISCUSSION: An earlier phase of work adapted social behaviour and network therapy (adult approach) to produce a purpose-designed youth version supported by a therapy manual and associated resources. This was achieved by consultation with young people with experience of services and professionals working in services for young people. This feasibility trial alongside ongoing consultations with young people will offer a meaningful understanding of processes of delivery and implementation.TRIAL REGISTRATION: ISRCTN93446265; Date ISRCTN assigned 31/05/2013.