During the 19th century, tiny Sand Island—an island located within Honolulu, Hawaii—was known as Quarantine Island. Ships containing infectious passengers were quarantined there. These days, it is home to Sand Island Treatment Center, which, for more than 50 years, has offered treatment for substance abuse and co-occurring disorders. The average stay is eight months, with comprehensive outpatient and aftercare programs that typically result in a two-year commitment for residents who take advantage of all these offerings. The rehab is operated by the Kline-Welsh Behavioral Health Foundation.
Accommodations and Food
Residents at Sand Island Treatment Center are housed in multiple large, dorm-like complexes. Though the program is co-ed, there are separate wings for men and women. For those seeking privacy, be warned: while some dorm rooms at the facility hold the traditional two residents each with twin beds, this rehab also has large cabins that house 15 clients in the same room. These “rooms” are best described as large, summer-camp style cabins with bunk beds and foot lockers at the end of each bed. Other rooms on the property house five, eight and 10 clients. Bathrooms are also shared in common areas outside the rooms.
Sand Island Treatment Center’s housing system is based on a graduation method; clients can work their way toward more private rooms and ultimately, a two-person room. The idea is that living in densely populated quarters encourages clients to move away from being self-centered and focus on the 12 steps. Those remaining at Sand Island Treatment Center for aftercare typically relocate to their own section of the compound.
The rehab also believes that a resident must shed all vestiges of their former lives—including material attachments—except for two weeks’ worth of clothing and personal hygiene items not exceeding 75 pounds. So chances are blow dryers and personal razors should be left behind. Don’t even ask about bringing a cell phone. All electronics are forbidden.
A staff chef works with a dietitian to provide cafeteria-style meals that are healthy and nutritious. Vegetarians and residents with special dietary needs are accommodated.
Face-to-face screening is required prior to admission, and top priority is given to pregnant clients as well as IV drug users. There is no medical detox offered at Sand Island Treatment Center, so residents are advised to take care of this procedure beforehand if necessary.
The intensive residential phase of the 12 step-based program lasts anywhere from six to nine months. A client receives an individualized treatment plan. Days are long and highly structured, with many group and individual counseling sessions as well as classes to address codependency, anger management, relapse prevention and more. AA, NA and other 12-step meetings are held on-site frequently throughout the week. “All or nothing” is the key here, and the rehab has “zero tolerance” for clients who relapse on the premises.
A spiritual meeting starts the day as early as 4:20 am (yes, you read that right). During the day, residents are assigned chores and often work in teams. The rehab is not unlike a commune where responsibilities, resources and spiritual support are shared.
After residential treatment, clients can continue living on the compound if they choose, scaling back on therapy to focus instead on finding employment. For those who need to truly rebuild their lives from the ground up, Sand Island offers aftercare and can help clients find sober living homes in the area.
While clients without insurance pay $6,000 for the first two months of residential treatment, the fee is negotiable based on need. After that, the rehab charges $3,000 for each successive month. The transitional care program costs $420 a month.
Sand Island Treatment Center employs a medical team including a physician and a psychiatrist who schedules appointments with clients on selected days. Other than that, there are also general staff available around-the-clock.
Because of Sand Island Treatment Center’s coastal setting, trips to the beach are frequent. Still, these outings are treated as a privilege, and residents can lose access to the beach for bad behavior. As far as on-site amenities, residents should not expect a high-end gym, though there are exercise machines for those looking to exercise.
Sand Island Treatment Center has a huge waiting list and potential clients should note that they run a very tight ship. But those seeking long-term 12-step care in paradise with a high degree of aftercare support may find themselves at home here.
Sand Island Treatment Center Location
40 Sand Island Parkway
Honolulu, HI 96802
Sand Island Treatment Center Cost
$3,000 (30 days). Reach Sand Island Treatment Center by phone at (808) 842-7529. Find Sand Island Treatment Center at Google+
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