Located in Atlantic City, John Brooks Recovery Center has been offering free substance abuse treatment to the residents of New Jersey since 1969. Named for its founder, a recovering heroin addict and ex-convict who served as the executive director for over 25 years, John Brooks has helped tens of thousands of people find recovery. With four locations, it provides residential treatment for men and women and outpatient services, including Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT).
Accommodations and Food
The residential housing is split by gender, with 82 beds for men and 29 beds for women. The converted office spaces are set up in a traditional treatment center fashion. Dorm-style bedrooms are shared between two clients, featuring twin-sized beds, small dressers and desks. The buildings offer small workout rooms, dining halls, offices, therapy rooms and common areas with TVs. Smoking is permitted in designated areas outside, during break time.
Three meals a day are provided for residents by an institutional food service company. Meals are served cafeteria-style in the dining hall. Options are hearty and nutritious, with generous portions. Dietary requests can usually be accommodated. Coffee and tea are provided and snacks are available in the afternoons and evenings.
Treatment and Staff
John Brooks Recovery Center offers residential treatment, a women’s day program, intensive outpatient (IOP), outpatient and a medication-assisted methadone program. Most of the treatment is long term, although duration depends on the individual’s needs.
The long-term residential program usually lasts for three to six months. Treatment is gender-specific and includes individual counseling once a week, daily group counseling, stress management, interpersonal communication, independent living skills, parenting skills, HIV/AIDS education, 12-step meetings and relapse prevention. Groups focus on coping skills, health, trauma and anger management. Evidence-based models such as CBT and DBT are used in both a group and individual setting. Clients are required to attend three off-site AA/NA meetings per week and are encouraged to get a sponsor.
Once the residential program has been completed, clients can step down into the IOP program, which meets three times a week, for three hours at a time. During this time, clients take part in group therapy, individual therapy once a week and educational lectures. IOP groups typically have between 10 and 15 clients per session.
The women’s day program is a specialized form of IOP that meets three times a week, for three-hour sessions. This service consists of transportation, on-site childcare, case management—for those who have pending criminal charges or are involved with children’s services—and all of the therapeutic services included in the traditional IOP.
The outpatient program offers support once a week, for three-hour sessions. The length of time spent in this program depends on the individual. Outpatient group sizes are usually around 20 clients at a time. Clients in all outpatient programs are required to attend at least two AA/NA meetings per week and have an attendance card signed.
The methadone maintenance program offers medication to help with opiate withdrawal, as well as weekly group therapy and a monthly individual therapy session. Medication is dispensed Monday through Saturday.
The clinical staff of James Brooks consists of certified substance abuse counselors (CSACs), nurse practitioners, social workers and visiting physicians who donate their time on a weekly basis.
Testing for HIV/AIDS and hepatitis is available on site.
Project ROW is a recovery on wheels program that uses a specially equipped bus to provide methadone/Suboxone detox and maintenance medications in Atlantic City neighborhoods. The unit is outfitted to include a doctor’s exam room, medication dispensing area, lab station, case management area, lavatory and patient waiting area. The clients who receive this medication are also required to attend group and individual counseling at the main facility.
The John Brooks Recovery Center offers affordable, community-based support during each phase of recovery. Thanks to government funding, their services are completely free to low-income residents of New Jersey. Through evidence-based treatment and a strong focus on the 12 steps and relapse prevention, long-lasting sobriety is achievable for those from all walks of life.
John Brooks Recovery Center
1315 Pacific Ave
Atlantic City, NJ 08401
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