First Step of Sarasota Residential Reviews, Cost, Complaints
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First Step of Sarasota Residential


Sarasota FloridaFirst Step of Sarasota Residential Review

Founded in 1967 as the Sarasota Rehabilitation Program, First Step of Sarasota opened its residential treatment buildings in 1983. Located in heart of Sarasota, along Florida’s Gulf coast, First Step offers more than 20 substance abuse treatment programs including detox, residential and outpatient. Residential treatment uses 12-step principles and is offered in 30, 60, 90, 180, 270-day and one year programs.

Accommodations and Food

The First Step residential facility was built specifically for the organization. It includes a pool, a sports area, common areas and therapy rooms. Clients share the motel-style rooms with one other person, each getting their own twin-size beds. All meals are included in cost of stay and prepared for the clients, cafeteria-style. Most dietary restrictions  can be accommodated.

Treatment and Staff

Detox at First Step is provided in a 30-bed medically-supervised unit and lasts three to 10 days. Clients get proper nutrition and vitamins, are directed to self-help support groups and plan for continuing care. They take part in structured, daily activities such as educational groups, on-site AA/NA meetings and discharge planning.

First Step offers two different residential tracks: Pathways, is a month-long program that offers relapse prevention and counseling services on a fee-for-service basis. The Seasons residential program is meant for clients with co-occurring disorders. It is 12-step-based and includes symptom management, relapse prevention, communication skill building, family counseling, group, goal setting and discharge planning. Seasons lasts 30 to 60 days, based on an individualized treatment plan. It is paid by the State and free to clients. Those with private insurance are ineligible. Those who are eligible only pay for medication. Extended care is designed for clients with criminal justice involvement or who need dual-diagnosis support. Extended care lasts a minimum of 90 days and requires participation of family or friends.

First Step also offers the Mothers and Infants program: a combination of group and individual counseling with parenting, nutrition and life management classes. Clients must be 18 or older and pregnant to enter. Infants stay with the mother after the birth. Length of stay is based on an assessment and treatment is provided at no cost.

First Step residential is staffed by three LCDCs, a registered nurse and a visiting medical doctor.


As part of its commitment to persons with disabilities, limited English proficiency and those who are deaf and hard-of-hearing, First Step of Sarasota has developed an Auxiliary Aids and Services Plan, which guides the organization when providing services.

In Summary

For over 30 years, First Step of Sarasota has offered its varied residential programs. It is due to that variety that it’s quite likely a prospective client may find an option that fits his or her needs. The most compelling factor however may be that many of First Step’s programs are State-funded, providing much-needed specialized services to clients who need them most.

First Step of Sarasota Residential Location

4613 N. Washington Boulevard
Sarasota, FL 34234

First Step of Sarasota Residential Cost

$9,600 (30 days). Reach First Step of Sarasota by phone at (941) 366-5333 or by email at [email protected]. Find First Step of Sarasota on Facebook, YouTube, Google+ and LinkedIn

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