Is the facility licensed and accredited?

Licensed and accredited recovery centers conform to strict requirements that help ensure they offer quality treatment. The most common and well-regarded accreditation body is the Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Health Care Organization. Many reputable treatment centers will display this seal.

State licensing differs from accreditation as states vary widely in their licensing requirements. Ensuring that a facility meets these basic standards will improve the likelihood that their programs are sound and effective. It can be difficult to discern which treatment centers are unethical, so exercise caution if you find a number of negative news stories or reviews about a facility.

What credentials and licenses do the program’s clinical staff hold?

Proper training and associated credentials help ensure that the treatment facility’s staff is well equipped to offer meaningful help to someone trying to get clean and sober. Nationally recognized standards for professional practice include LADC (licensed alcohol and drug counselor), LPC (licensed professional counselor), CAC (certified addictions counselor), or CCDP (certified co-occurring disorders counselor).

Is medical detox offered as a part of inpatient treatment?

Detox involves withdrawal symptoms that can be severe and life-threatening, so appropriate medical supervision is critical. Thorough, medically supervised detoxification ensures that patients are physically stabilized before beginning the multi-dimensional treatment process. Ideally, a facility has round-the-clock qualified medical professionals on site.

What can I expect from day to day? Is a sample schedule available?

Learning about the center’s philosophy, environment and general schedule can give you insight into the rigor and quality of the facility. Most programs begin with a psychological and physical evaluation, and will address each stage of treatment comprehensively. A treatment environment that feels safe and encourages healthy relating to others can aid the recovery process tremendously. A space that emphasizes respect and dignity will also promote a positive and successful treatment experience.

What type of help is available for families?

Substance abuse generally affects the whole family, thus most families need to heal and recover as well. Understanding the recovery process, learning to address their experiences, and rebuilding a healthy family structure not only helps families get better, but is also important for building a support system for the person undergoing treatment. Treatment patients often have better recovery rates when the whole family is educated and involved in the recovery process.

Do they offer inpatient or outpatient care or both?

In inpatient care, patients live full-time at the facility. This offers an immersive routine, free from distractions, usually involving 8-10 hours a day in activities like in counseling, group discussion, and other therapies. In outpatient care, clients attend the facility during the day or in the evenings and go home at night. Partial hospitalization programs are a third option.

Care can range anywhere from 28 days to upwards of a year. Research shows that the longer an individual remains in care, the better their chances of achieving long-term recovery. Programs with the best track records usually last longer than 30 days. Most facilities will help you determine what type of program is best suited to your needs during the initial evaluation and assessment period.

Does the program teach a recovering person sufficient life skills to support a sober life?

For most people, successfully completing treatment is just the beginning. A comprehensive overhaul to basic coping mechanisms and life skills is often necessary to maintain sobriety. Learning new skills to deal with stress, anxiety and conflict are often crucial to success.

Does the treatment program encourage participation in a 12-step program?

Many treatment centers use a 12-step program, formally or informally, to help guide patients to long-term sobriety. Engaging with a 12-step program or other support group can help build the support structure needed to establish happy, contented, and lasting recovery.

Does the program offer ongoing support after leaving treatment?

Undergoing treatment alone is generally insufficient to maintain recovery for most patients. An aftercare plan that includes participation in a 12-step program (such as Alcoholics Anonymous) or other support group is extremely helpful. A thorough treatment program will assist the client as they move into the next phase of care. Some facilities offer aftercare programs to help prevent relapse and to help recovering addicts adjust to sober living. These programs come in many forms, from ongoing support groups to sober living homes.

What are the options for payment?

Many insurance policies cover some or all of an addiction treatment program. Alternatively, many treatment centers offer a range of financing options and payment plans. Although cost is certainly a factor in finding the right treatment center, it shouldn’t be the only factor in choosing the best program your needs. Continuing to drink or use is far more expensive than most treatment centers. Substance abuse often costs a lifetime’s of income and savings, not to mention your dignity and freedom.  

If you have additional questions about treatment for you or someone you know, please reach out today.