If you're looking for drug or alcohol addiction help - you'll have already realised the myriad of options on offer. Choosing the wrong provider can mean serious consequences for future sobriety, relationships, and family life.
Here's everything you need to know when buying rehab - including how to ask the right questions and weed out weaker options.
Step 1 - Understand What You Need
Having gone through months (years?) of denial, when we're ready for treatment, it's easy to rush ahead into the first detox provider you call. But use your needs, and past experience, first and foremost, as your guide to what treatment will work best.
Detox, Rehab, Or Both?
Addiction treatment for alcohol or drugs usually starts with a detox, then therapy (rehab), followed by aftercare. But which of these is right for you?
- Have you been detoxed before? Think about this carefully.
If you've completed previous treatment and have a good understanding of self already, the full programme may not be required. But if you don't have supports in place, the detox-only option may not be enough.
Rehab In The Right Place
The convenience of a nearby clinic can seem appealing when feeling in need of detox.
But the provider on your doorstep doesn't necessarily provide the best overall value, in the context of your entire recovery journey.
Most clinics provide standard detox protocols and some form of therapy. But will they still be supporting you after you leave the clinic? Asking a few basics like these upfront can save a lot of headache later.
See all the locations Abbeycare serve, here.
If You Have Complex Needs
Getting the right help means being picky about the support you'll receive while in treatment.
This can be especially important where you have complex drug or alcohol detox needs.
While an admissions team or sales team can give an indication of likely detox methods, this is of course finalised and decided upon by the supervising medical professionals present.
Getting reassurance that the provider is not only ready to detox you based on your needs, but has done so many times for others in the past, is important.
- How long should detox take, for me?
- Is dealing with someone with my intake level and addiction history, a normal everyday client for your clinic?
- Are there suitable staff in the clinic who are equipped to handle detox complications?
Step 2 - How Does Rehab Work?
What should I expect, inside an addiction clinic?
Rehabilitation clinics operate a residential service - you stay residentially, in the clinic, 24hrs a day, usually with your own room and personal space.
The clinic you enquire with, have to make sure they can look after you and your needs for detox and rehab. They'll ask some standard questions about your usage, and history with addiction. This is normal, and it's important for them to rule out extreme cases where their environment may not be safe, or provide a comfortable detox experience.
Keeping Track Of Getting Better
Clients are normally encouraged to actively monitor their progress towards recovery treatment goals and outcomes.
Most providers, at the start of your stay, will help you visualise personal goals and progress targets, in a specifically designed care plan.
This is your opportunity to make sure your key sticking points, triggers, and recurring issues, are factored in, and will get appropriate attention during your stay. This part is important and can determine your progress later, so don't skip it.
- Is the care planning the same for every client, or is it personalised to me?
- How do I know if I'm on the right track, during treatment?
- Does care planning account for my detox needs, therapy needs, or both?
- Am I passed from one staff member to another, as shifts change?
A Day In The Life
What actually happens in a clinic, every day?
The structure of each day will vary of course, from one provider to the next.
Private clinics are normally group oriented. Consistency can be maintained by everyone sharing in the same day structure, usually in the form of an agenda. This schedule will be your guide for day to day life in the clinic, as you move through the stages of treatment in your care plan.
The duration of detox each individual needs, will vary, based on multiple factors, including frequency and recency of usage, history of addiction, previous detoxes, etc. Some will be ready to start therapeutic work after just a few days. Sometimes, detox will last much longer. Clinic staff understand this.
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?
- Can you send me an example of what the daily schedule is like, in the clinic?
- Can I arrange a visit to the clinic, to look around, without obligation, before committing?
- When would I be expected to move from detox into therapy in the clinic?
Addiction Treatment & Covid-19
Recovering from addiction is a group-oriented exercise.
Overcoming old patterns of self-isolation is normally a big part of getting better.
Making long term recovery gains today, means being careful to check on some basics re covid-19 preparedness and preventative measures.
Step 3 - Managing The Budget For Treatment
Public health services are usually free, but rarely provide detox, or speedy access to treatment. Private providers are more specialist, with a joined up approach, but come at a cost.
The ability of third sector or voluntary organisations to deal with more complex detox needs is usually slim - it's worth looking into this though.
As you can imagine, the cheapest provider is not always the best.
Double check standards of care and therapy provided for lower cost providers - you may be surprised. Opt instead for a middle-tier clinic, with a better balance of cost to care levels provided.
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 Ways To Get Help
Most locations hold local Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous meetings which can assist in the mutual aid and social elements of recovery.
If you're just starting out in recovery though, detoxing comfortably first, will undoubtedly be the priority.
Mutual aid meetings have earned their place in everyone's recovery. But at the early stages, it's important to get safe and comfortable professional help to detox.
Requesting a referral to your local CAT (Community Addictions Team) from your GP normally means being assigned to a local keyworker who will help you keep track of intake, effects it has, etc, but obtaining short-term rehab help via public healthcare, is unlikely.
Hospital or clinic based detox places strain on resources and funding, and is usually only available for extreme cases.
Families and friends often agree to jointly finance private treatment, in cases where no publicly funded options are available.
Step 4 - Find Objective Reviews
Review platforms are widespread nowadays and some reviews are not always trustworthy.
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 regulators ensure clinics are up to scratch, and send written reports to clinics with their findings, on how they can improve their service, and potential penalties, if they don't comply.
Clinics are reviewed on quality and expertise of their service, staff, and care levels provided.
Important - Regulator Inspections
There are 2 types of clinic inspections you need to know about - "Unannounced" and "Announced". "Unannounced" means the inspection team arrived at the provider with no forewarning; "Announced" means the clinic were aware of the visit in advance; therefore, always seek out reports detailing "Unannounced" inspections, to get the clearest picture possible, of day-to-day standards, inside the clinic.
Step 5 - Decide On A Provider
At this point, you've got enough info to decide on one of the clinics you've seen.
The clinic team will ask you to complete a telephone questionnaire, to make sure they can meet your needs.
After the assessment is complete, the clinic will start making preparations for your stay - to do this, they'll need some commitment from you, in the form of a deposit payment - this holds the room in your name, and allows the team to start making arrangements.
Take the opportunity at this point to arrange payment via insurance policy, if applicable.
Step 6 - Arranging Payment
As mentioned above, paying a deposit means the clinic can prepare for your arrival, and allocate your room booking.
Because the total booking value is high, even a small percentage deposit could work out anywhere from £2,000 - £4,000 for the higher end providers.
Not many clinics remain, who offer finance payment plans, directly.
Make sure to get an email confirmation of deposit paid, and confirmation of what happens next.
The remaining balance is normally paid for on arrival at the clinic, at the point of admission.
It’s worth making the effort to settle this on time, as some providers can levy surcharges for late payment, and this quickly adds up, on larger balances.
Step 7 - Admission Into Treatment
Did you get a booking confirmation, containing the practical details, like date and time you're due to arrive for treatment? If not, request one now.
You'll need to bring a few basic necessities with you:
Rules re mobile phone and device usage varies from clinic to clinic - it's worth checking before you set off - how many devices are allowed, and what the internet usage policy is. Many clinics have a restricted use policy, to keep clients on track.
Most clinics have a busy schedule and making sure you arrive on time is important. Getting your means of transport to the clinic organised ahead of time, will ensure things are effortless, on the day.
Now, enjoy your recovery!
Are You Asking The Right Questions?
You've reached the end of our ultimate guide on finding the right rehab!
Abbeycare have provided this guide free of charge, to help you make the right decision when considering addiction rehab treatment options.
Abbeycare's UK clinics are available to those in Ringland.
We've worked with thousands from all over the world, and we can probably help you too.
All these years we've stuck to the basics that work - structured detox, therapy, and aftercare solutions that help get folks back on track.
Even if you're not local, we can still help with transport into treatment (full transparency - some costs do apply).
How did we do with inspections from regulators? Check our reports, available on our clinic pages, here: Abbeycare Scotland, and Abbeycare Gloucester.
Our admissions team will help you navigate the treatment options.
Our medical team can assist you to detox, safely, and comfortably.
The Abbeycare therapy team are specialists in helping you identify and work through the underlying triggers behind addiction.
Our clinic team are ready to help you make the progress you need.
Are you ready?
If you're ready for help, call our admissions team direct, on 01603 513 091.