Evaluating a Treatment Center

Have you tried to do a Google Search, for a treatment center? It is overwhelming.  My first stop tends to be a government website.  I have a list of resources posted in another article, if you are interested.  But, for treatment center questions, I have found that the Drugfree.org website has a lot of good information (especially for parents). As I was browsing through the content, I came across a valuable download.  Actually, there are three, but the first one I pulled up is named “Questions to Ask Treatment Programs”. The subtitle states “are you looking for a drug and alcohol treatment program for your teen or young adult?”.  It is in e-book format and prints out to a couple dozen pages.  It is meant for parents to take to a treatment center. It helps them evaluate recovery programs, they are considering for their child.


It’s a bit bulky, so I wrote out a short version below, applicable to anyone. Take what you like from it ……

Hospital/Treatment Center Name:
Phone Number:

Overview Questions

What levels of care do you offer? (impatient, outpatient, medication assisted, aftercare, family support)

What is your intake process (i.e. is there a medical review)?

Do you use an assessment tool (i.e.. how do you diagnose patients)?

Is your program licensed by the state?

How long have you been in business?

Does your program have any kind of accreditation status?

What is your eligibility process (i.e. do you take all kinds of patients)?

Facility and Staff Questions

What is the staff-to-patient ratio?

What is your maximum occupancy?

Do you ever have a waiting list?

Do you offer medication-assisted-treatment?

Do you administer medication (that I am currently taking)?

How many medical doctors are on staff?

What is your staff like, in terms of personality?

What is their education level? Are any or all of them in recovery? What is their background?
Payment Questions

What is the cost of the program?

What kind of insurance is accepted?

Do you offer a payment plan?

Do you offer financial aid or a payment scale based on income?

Is there a discount if I need to return to the program?

Family Involvement

Do you offer family counseling?

Are parents or spouses required to participate in the program?

Are there any specific services offered to parents or spouses?

Aftercare and Continuing Care

When the program ends, how do you know I am ready to enter back into society?

What do you do to help the ongoing recovery process?

When the program ends, do you conduct a few check-ups?


What is your ideal patient?

What kind of addictions have you had the most success with?

Can I talk to some patients, that have completed the program?

May I tour the facility?

Remember — picking a treatment center is not easy.  Do everything in your power, to make your decision with care!

Our 800RecoveryHub site offers free and confidential help

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