New to addiction treatment? Clinic programmes and options for private addiction help can be confusing. It's easy to sign up too quickly for treatment, without a proper understanding what to look for.
We've compiled this need-to-know guide, including questions to ask each clinic *before* you pay - including a printable cheatsheet.
Step 1 - Get Clear On Your Needs
There are a wealth of treatment options available for those fresh to the journey of recovery. Get off to the right start by deciding first what you need - detox, rehab, or both?
Detox & Rehab: Short Term .v. Long Term
- Do you need all three stages of treatment, detox > rehab > aftercare? It's important to be clear on this.
You could go for a detox-only programme, but run greater risk of future relapse if other supports are not in place.
Location, Location, Location?
Thinking of treatment nearby? It's a natural response when feeling low.
Looking farther afield can potentially mean finding a higher standard of care, for less cost.
Detox can be found in many places, but a strong rehabilitation programme with excellent therapy can mean much greater progress in the long term. Researching the most appropriate option for you personally, can yield big long term results in your sobriety, later.
Like many things in life, the quality of your experience in a rehab clinic can come down to the breadth and depth of experience of the staff you're working with.
You'll want a clear idea here of what detox protocol you're getting, and what help is available during it.
The medical team at a given clinic have the final say of course, but the admissions team for a provider should be well-versed enough to give you an idea of how your detox will proceed.
Likewise for therapeutic help, what specialist qualifications in addiction do the team have? Ask here about issues that have been sticking points for you in the past, and their suitability to help.
- Do you foresee any complications with my detox?
- What addiction experience do your prescribing professionals have?
- Are there suitable staff in the clinic who are equipped to handle detox complications?
Step 2 - Behind The Scenes In An Addiction Treatment Clinic
What should I expect, inside an addiction clinic?
Rehab clinics are not hospitals with shared wards - you'd normally have your own room in the clinic for the length of your stay. Some clinics also offer shared rooms - although this has become less common since the advent of coronavirus.
Before admission, you should expect to complete an initial assessment over the phone with admissions staff, whose job it is to co-ordinate the information you provide with specialists inside the clinic, and ensure their facility can meet your needs.
The Plan For Treatment
If your clinic provides strong personal attention in the programme, they should help you map out what you want from treatment, exactly.
If staff do not offer to help draw up a personalised care plan of action for your clinic time, and longer recovery journey, you've chosen the wrong provider.
Whilst not the most exciting part of the journey, this is a necessary means to help you monitor progress toward your long term vision. Don't miss this bit out.
- What sort of care planning takes place when I enter the clinic?
- How do clinic staff know they're doing a good job at helping clients achieve recovery?
- Does care planning account for my detox needs, therapy needs, or both?
- Is there a member of staff assigned to me personally?
Life Inside The Clinic
What actually happens in a clinic, every day?
Without actually being in the clinic, the closest you can get is to ask questions about the daily experience of life in the clinic.
Since residential rehab is a group environment, most clinics provide each client with a daily agenda, every night for the following day. This will give a clear indication of what activities happen when, where, and what's expected of you.
Factors such as previous detoxes, history of relapse, amount and duration of intake, and others, will determine how long the detox stage of treatment takes. Getting clear of the physical effects of alcohol or substance misuse in detox could take 3-6 days, for lighter use cases. Other times, it takes longer for the body to process the left-over substances. This level of variance between individuals is very normal.
Always enquire about having a look around the clinic, by visiting first, before committing. Most clinics don't have an open-door policy, but will happily let you see inside, by arrangement.
- What see inside photos do you have, of the clinic, online?
- Give me an idea of how each day is structured, whilst in treatment?
- How do I arrange to see inside the clinic, before admitting?
- When do I get to start taking part in the therapeutic help inside the clinic?
Does Covid-19 Affect My Rehab Treatment?
They say, that rehab and recovery are team sports.
Gains achieved during treatment can be amplified by the help of the peer group around you.
Achieving recovery in a covid-19 world, however, means making some accommodations along the way.
Step 3 - Rehab On A Budget
Whilst private clinics offer fast access to specialist help, financing the stay in treatment needs planning.
There are few half way house providers that exist generally, between public providers, and private treatment, so get clear from the start on which you need.
Like most things in life, it's tempting to go for simply the cheapest cost provider.
Instead, seeking out non-brand name providers, who spend less on business and more on care levels, can pay off.
Use this step to get a clear idea of what rough budget you can commit to treatment, ringing round a few providers for initial pricing if needed.
Other Avenues For Help
Community-Led Support Channels
12 step support groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous are usually available in most locations, although meetings have largely shifted towards online now, in the wake of covid issues.
Whilst mutual aid plays a big part for many, later in their recovery journey, those at the start will need professional help to detox safely.
AA, NA, and the big book groups have millions of followers and attendees, and have been very successful over the years. But starting out - you'll need more specialist help for detox.
Community Healthcare Options
In the first instance, it's possible to present to your GP and discuss the possibility of referral to your local addictions team, in the NHS. They will usually help you monitor the effects of addiction in your life, but are unable to refer or provide funding for immediate detox, in most cases.
Usually, only the more complex cases with a long history of addiction are considered for placement into specialist detox units.
More often, where a genuine need for short term detox exists, it's more common to see loved ones and family pulling funds together to help someone get help.
Step 4 - Find Objective Reviews
Reviews on websites are easy to pass off as genuine, but how do you really know they are?
In these situations we need an independent and impartial regulator's opinion - in this case, The Care Quality Commission (CQC) for England and Wales, and The Care Inspectorate, for Scotland.
These two regulatory bodies inspect rehab clinics on a regular basis (usually annually) and produce written reports on their findings.
Clinics are graded across multiple areas of care, including support standards, management, and clinical environment.
Regulatory Inspections - Keynotes
In some visits, the provider is made aware in advance, that the inspection is occuring - these are what's known as "Announced" inspections. Other times, inspection teams show up without warning - these are "Unannounced" inspections - therefore, to get the most reliable information, look for reports which state the inspection was Unannounced.
Step 5 - Decide On A Provider
Now is the time to come to a decision about where you're completing treatment.
Expect to go through a few questions initially, when you call the provider you've chosen - this is normal.
When the assessment is complete, you'll likely be asked to pay a deposit, to book a place in the clinic, and allow the provider to start preparing for your arrival.
Now is also the time to finalise any other arrangements re payment, like paying via insurance policy.
Step 6 - Funding Your Stay
As mentioned above, paying a deposit means the clinic can prepare for your arrival, and allocate your room booking.
Expect to pay anywhere from £1,800 to £4,000 to book a place in a treatment provider's clinic.
A few offer payment plans to help spread the cost of rehab, although nowadays this is less common.
An email confirmation of your booking is usually sent to you, confirming the next steps.
Paying For The Rest Of Treatment
The balance to pay for treatment, if not paying via insurance or a third party, is usually due when you arrive to admit to the clinic.
It's a good idea to pay this promptly, to avoid excess charges.
Step 7 - Admit to treatment
Now it's time for the practical stuff of admitting. Double check you have a note of your confirmed date and time your due to admit to the clinic.
Bring along a few supplies with you, like those below. You should be able to arrange for anything else, after arrival.
Check your booking confirmation for advice about mobile phone usage, internet access, visits, leisure facilities, and any special arrangements for covid-19.
It's also worth ensuring travel arrangement ahead of schedule - as some providers with have surcharges for late arrival.
From this point on, your recovery journey has begun!
Print Our Cheatsheet To Easily Compare Providers
Thanks for reading our guide.
You'll find all the right questions to ask a treatment provider in our printable checklist.
Get direct download access here.
Thanks for reading our ultimate guide to finding treatment help in Fairwater.
Abbeycare's UK clinics are available to those in Fairwater.
We've worked with thousands from all over the world, and we can probably help you too.
In these last 15 years, our experience has gone from strength to strength.
Even if you need transport arranged to get here, we can probably help with that too.
Our admissions team will help you navigate the treatment options.
Our medical team can assist you to detox, safely, and comfortably.
Our therapists are ready to help you get the insights you need, to stop the pattern of addiction, and reclaim your life.
Our clinic team are ready to help you make the progress you need.
Are you ready for recovery?
To ask a question, or to arrange admission, ring our team now on 01603 513 091.