Recovery Center Blog

5 Things To Look For in a Recovery Center

Written By Recovery Centers - January 14th, 2019
5 Things To Look For in a Recovery Center

Many areas have multiple centers that specialize in helping patients recover from alcohol or drugs. Also, if a person intends to check into a residential program, he or she may travel some reasonable distance. You have options.  It’s extremely important to research rehab programs before choosing one. To do that, one must know what to look for. Here is a list of five things to look for in a recovery center.

Five Things To Look For in a Recovery Center

1. A doctor and high-quality staff

First, let’s look at the necessity of a doctor.  Not all programs have a medical doctor, such as an internist, on staff full-time.  Look for one that does.  This is in case of any possible seizures or major medical events that may happen.  Even if you believe you or the patient may never need this care, it is essential.

However, the backbone of recovery centers is the licensed staff of substance abuse professionals.  This is a specific specialization—a career—and any excellent facility with staff one of these professionals per seven or eight patients. An RN or similar professional is a general health professional, not a rehab specialist. There’s no reason to settle for care from an unqualified staff.

2. Does the facility assess its care?

Many of the best rehab centers either have care coordinators or they use some measures to be aware of how the rehab process is going.  In addition to researching a facility online, try to discuss things on the phone or meet in person with them.  Find out if they survey patients during the rehab process to see how things are going. Do program staff members meet with the families or spouses of the patient?

3. Is there positivity in the center?

This is where making a visit to a center in advance because crucial.  When you go to a detox program, one of the things you’ll be looking for is a positive approach that lends itself to your sobriety.  While it’s hard to learn a lot about this on a first impression, your initial visit will give you clues.  Do you get greetings or smiles from anyone passing you in the hallways? Do the staff members seem friendly and happy when interacting with each other? If you overhear complaints about being overworked, don’t just shrug that off as a common workplace complaint.

If the staff person you meet with is detailed in describing a full process, that is a good sign.  If he or she can talk to you about methods that the center’s certified addiction experts can and will execute, that’s outstanding.  If you really have to dig for answers, or if the administrators promise some easy fixes, please recognize that warning sign.

4. Does the center attend to overall issues?

As part of the detox or recovery plan that the center offers, they should be able to talk you through a plan that involves mental health as needed, and holistic health issues.  A recovery plan often involves looking at the issues underlying addiction.  It is more difficult to gain true sobriety if one is working on an overall outlook in life.  If a program can’t promise this sort of approach, it may not be able to offer the best rehab services. 

5. Is the center accredited?

All of these five things to look for in a rehab center are very important.  In some ways, though, while this one is pretty straightforward, it’s one of the most important.  It’s also easy to check for.  For example, a major accreditation agency for rehab centers and similar facilities is the Joint Commission (JCAHO).  Another one is CARF.  Now, a 2013 study showed that nearly 60% of recovery centers didn’t have accreditation from either agency.  However, going through an accreditation process demonstrates a level of dedication and enthusiasm on the part of the facility. 

When accreditation bodies look into a recovery program, they interview and audit the administration and staff.  They also put a lot of emphasis on the education and credentials of the staff, as well as a variety of other factors, including, in some cases, some survey of the satisfaction of patients.  If there is an accredited facility reasonably close to where you or your loved one lives, you should give a lot of weight to that facility, keeping in mind these other issues.

If you are going to push yourself and apply a lot of courage and willpower to kick your addiction, you owe it to yourself to go to an excellent facility that will do its part as well as possible.