At Elements Behavioral Health’s The Recovery Place in sunny Fort Lauderdale, Florida, treatment is a family affair, though not in the traditional sense. What they understand all too well is that active alcoholism and drug abuse has inevitable consequences on the family—alcoholism is a family disease, after all.
Accommodations and Food
Clients live together in condos, cook their own meals with food bought by grocery store gift cards (no meals are served here) and share common areas, which include a covered patio and swimming pool. There are typically two to three people per room and every residence is equipped with cable television. The residential area is just steps away from the treatment center itself, which is unfortunately housed in a strip-mall type setting. Some alumni reported that the actual facility was not quite as nice as what was portrayed on their website, but still admitted that what it lacked in aesthetics, it made up for in top-notch treatment.
Treatment and Staff
A comprehensive rehabilitation program—from intervention to sober living—for clients and their loved ones is all part of the recovery process at The Recovery Place. While the South Florida rehab has only been around for a little over six years, it’s made an impact in that short amount of time.
Programs at The Recovery Place include The Impact Program, which is specifically designed for clients between the ages of 18 and 25 who have a history of chronic relapse (though the clientele here skews young overall, with most falling in the late 20s to early 30s range). While they also have something called The Three Strands Christian Addiction Program (a Christian-based recovery option), religion plays no real part in their primary program.
A typical day at The Recovery Place varies depending on the individual. Adhering to the idea that life in rehab should be as similar to real life as possible, there are no designated, summer camp-like mealtimes in a centralized place since clients prepare meals in their residences. In addition, the living facility comprises a combination of people in active treatment and people in maintenance-phase sober living so everyone’s schedule differs depending on their phase of recovery. For inpatient clients, a day consists of a combination of group therapy (three times a week and separated by specific addictions), individual therapy (once a week), fitness (every day), meditation, grocery shopping (once a week) and addiction education (multiple times a week and focused on the underlying psychological issues plaguing many alcoholics and addicts). The programs also encompass life management skills, step work based on the 12 steps, family therapy sessions and mental health dual-diagnosis treatment/medication maintenance.
The family therapy involves weekly sessions with patients along with educational programs for just the families at night. The ultimate goal is to become more self-sufficient and less in need of hand-holding with each passing day. Clients are not allowed to bring laptops, cell phones or inappropriate clothing, which can be an inconvenience due to the Florida heat and humidity. Drinks with excessive caffeine, any alcohol-based products or aerosols of any kind are not allowed. Portable music devices with headphones and linens from home are permissible, as is extra money for personal items like snacks and cigarettes.
Led by regional medical director Dr. Ash Bhatt, a kind-eyed, triple-board certified psychiatrist, The Recovery Place has a recovery team full of credentialed professionals fit for treating addictive behaviors. The maximum patient population is 112 and there are 26 employees comprising the clinical and leadership staff of doctors, nurses, licensed counselors and experienced managerial directors. In addition, 24/7 on-site technicians work in the residential center and maintain regular contact with the clinical staff, which is why The Recovery Place can boast around-the-clock care. Each patient is assigned an individual clinician upon entry and that clinician closely monitors their progress along with group recovery coaches and doctors. A recurring theme amongst former client testimonials is the genuine love and care they felt from The Recovery Place staff.
Beach trips and other outdoor recreational outings are strongly encouraged and considered a big part of the healing process here.
The Recovery Place recommends 30 days of treatment followed by an assessment of the client’s readiness to move onto sober living or continue with an active treatment program for an additional 30 to 60 days. But don’t let cost be a deterrent to getting full treatment; they accept a myriad of insurance plans and are also willing to negotiate costs for those who have to cover costs out of pocket.
Out of the many treatment centers in Florida, The Recovery Place stands out. For those looking for a variety of programming, solid medical and family involvement in recovery, this beach haven would be a good choice.
The Recovery Place
3100 E Commercial Blvd
Fort Lauderdale, FL 333089
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