Drug and alcohol addictions can often cause very diverse sets of problems for addicts and their families.
As a result, there is great need for a wide variety of addiction treatment programs. Most outpatient addiction treatment centers will offer two core treatment programs: partial hospitalization and intensive outpatient programs. Occasionally, they will also offer outpatient programs, alumni groups or 12 step meetings onsite.
Partial hospitalization or “PHP” for short, is a program ideal for individuals that need to undergo various psychotherapies but don’t require 24 hour care at a residential treatment center. Patients will live at home and commute to PHP meetings four or five days per week, usually for no more than 25 hours per week. The typical partial hospitalization curriculum will include cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), motivational interviewing (MI) and eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR). These various psychotherapies can be utilized in a group setting or one on one with a therapist. Partial hospitalization is also commonly referred to as “day treatment”.
Intensive outpatient programs or “IOP” for short, are considered to be a step below partial hospitalization but with a similar treatment curriculum. The typical IOP program will run for three hours each day and for three or four days per week. A step below IOP is outpatient programs (OP) which is a weekly meeting with a therapist, typically for one or two hours. Most outpatient addiction treatment centers will not offer OP.
There are a number of reasons a patient may choose to enroll at an outpatient addiction treatment center rather than an inpatient addiction treatment center. For starters, their insurance provider may not cover inpatient treatment or they can’t afford to self-pay for a higher level of care. The patient may be a highly functioning addict and isn’t able to leave work or school for a 30-90 day stay at a residential treatment center. The patient may also have small children with no one to take care of them while they complete an inpatient treatment program.
In many cases, outpatient addiction treatment centers are part of a brand’s full continuum of care and are offered to individuals that have just graduated from a residential addiction treatment center. Detoxification or “detox” is also rarely offered at outpatient treatment centers. If a five day detox is needed and inpatient addiction treatment is not an option, an individual may be able to detox at a local hospital before seeking outpatient treatment. It’s very important to understand what treatment programs are available to you.