Addiction Treatment: Deciphering the Good, Bad and Ugly

finding a reputable rehab

Getting up the courage to get help for a substance use disorder is hard enough without having to weed out the good, bad and ugly when it comes to addiction treatment centers. Yet knowing how to tell the difference between a reputable rehab and shady practices that put profit before patient care is a crucial step on the road to recovery.

Unfortunately, even a simple online search has proven not so simple over the years. Misleading ads and unethical online business practices have led to dishonest businesses appearing higher in search results than legit ones. Luckily, Google implemented new restrictions for addiction treatment providers, mutual support groups and crisis hotlines looking to advertise on websites, search pages and apps.

These businesses are now required to undergo an intense vetting process overseen by Portland-based LegitScript, a company created to make the internet and payment ecosystems “safer and more transparent.” To become LegitScript certified, a business has to pass criminal background checks, show that they’re fully licensed and carry valid insurance and submit “written policies and procedures” demonstrating their commitment to industry best practices, effective recovery and continuous improvement.

Choosing a Reputable Rehab

When finding a reputable rehab for yourself or for someone you love, consider the following questions:

Is there a screening or pre-admissions questionnaire?
The best type of addiction treatment will be tailored to your individual needs and depend upon your overall health and history of substance abuse. Along these lines, the in-take coordinators should take into consideration your medical history and addiction severity as well as any co-occurring mental illnesses prior to planning your course of treatment. If they don’t, you may be speaking with a patient “broker” who is paid to place you in a specific facility, whether or not it’s the right fit. To be sure, ask the person if he or she gets paid any type of referral fee.

Are they touting a 100 percent success rates or a “cure”? Here’s the reality: at least 40 to 60 percent of people will relapse at least once in their lifetime following a stint at rehab. Addiction is a chronic disease that requires lifelong management. A reputable rehab will never promise a “cure,” but it will offer a strong program along with services and support, even after you’ve completed treatment.

Are they offering you anything for free? If a treatment center pushes their “free” goods or services, including travel to the rehab or insurance, this likely indicates foul play. Especially be aware of those who offer free rent in sober living homes in exchange for attending a particular drug treatment program.

Are they accredited? Rehabs are not required to be accredited but the ones that are have much higher standards. Check for an accreditation seal on their website, including the coveted Joint Commission seal, which is recognized universally as a stamp of legitimacy, and indicates a facility’s philosophy and standards of care are far above the industry norm.

Are they giving you vague answers about their treatment program? Asking specific questions will help you differentiate between trustworthy addiction treatment centers and scammers. It will also help you determine whether you’re talking to a “broker”.

  • What evidence-based therapies do they offer?
  • Do they offer psychiatric services?
  • Do they offer medication-assisted treatment?
  • Do they have a clinical team comprised of certified doctors?
  • Do they have wellness therapies?
  • Do they offer long-term planning or relapse prevention?

    We’re One of the Good Guys

    Fortunately, there are many high-quality, ethical treatment programs looking to help families and their loved ones overcome addiction and lead sober lives. The Haven is an industry leader in organizational management, facility safety and thoroughness of communication with a client’s family and loved ones. We are LegitScript certified and have met Joint Commission standards for facility quality and management, treatment practices and quality of care. To learn more about how we provide you or someone you love with quality and comprehensive addiction treatment, call us today: 805-202-3440.

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    The Haven is no longer taking patients as it takes its time to reshape itself so to best service the needs of the greater SLO community.

    Contact: [email protected]