Ten Questions to Ask Other Treatment Programs

Choosing a treatment program is a big decision – and often not an easy one to make.

With a growing number of inpatient, outpatient and telehealth treatment options available, it can be difficult to narrow the field when you or someone you know is in need.

Here are some questions you can ask to help you differentiate a traditional treatment program from a comprehensive medically-based program – like the one offered by Enterhealth Ranch.

  1. Is your program’s curriculum primarily 12-step based? If so, would you please tell me why we should pay for your program when we can get that kind of service for free?
  2. Do you have a full-time addiction psychiatrist on staff at least 40 hours/week? If not, how do you address psychiatric issues?
  3. Do you have physicians on staff? If so, what kind of doctors are they?
  4. How long does the doctor spend seeing each patient each week? As is there an extra charge for each doctor visit?
  5. What is your program’s philosophy on using medications?
    (Medications can be an important component of successful treatment, but medication solutions are different for each patient.)
  6. At your center, are the people conducting the therapy counselors or therapists?
    (There’s a difference. Counselors need only be trained in 12-step concepts. Therapists are extensively trained at a post-graduate level to be able to work with the complex behavioral therapies needed to treat addiction.)
  7. Does your program allow the patient to see an individual therapist each week for at least four hours? If not, why not?
    (According to National Institutes of Health treatment guidelines, individual therapy is critical to the success of treatment.)
  8. How does your program approach working with the patient’s family? How often does the family participate in therapy – with and without the patient?
    (Ideally, family therapy is delivered in short, frequent sessions over the time the patient is in treatment, and for an extended time afterwards.)
  9. After my family member is discharged from residential treatment, will they be able to continue with their comprehensive medically-based treatment plan?
    (Outpatient care is just as critical as the continued care of any chronic disease. It also allows patients to learn how to apply all they’ve learned during residential care, helping keep them sober and their brains healing for the rest of their lives.)
  10. Do you offer neuropsychological testing?
    (Research shows addiction injures the brain. Neuropsychological testing allows doctors to see and measure the specific level of injury for each patient, as well as the patient’s cognitive strengths and weaknesses. These results are important guides for a clinical therapist to best teach the skills needed by the patient to remain sober.)