9 Factors To Look For In An Addiction Treatment Center

There are thousands of addiction treatment centers and rehab facilities in the U.S. that offer a variety of levels of care, drug treatment phases, and mental health services.

The best approach to narrowing the parameters of a search is to identify what criteria of factors are most important to you or a loved one, such as services and amenities.

People enter treatment with different addictions, dual diagnoses, medical histories, and personal preferences. Individual needs should determine what factors to prioritize.

The following are the nine most essential factors to consider when assessing which addiction treatment centers and rehab programs meet the most critical criteria.

1. Quality Of Accommodations and Facilities

One of the first things to notice about a treatment center is the presentation of its facility. Cleanliness and aesthetic layout are both factors of a well-run and maintained facility.

While pictures of facilities online can provide a baseline idea of what to expect, it’s always best to visit the facility in person, not only for residential and inpatient programs but also for outpatient rehab.

The sanitary conditions and cleanliness of a treatment center should be in accordance with the CDC’s Guidelines for Environmental Infection Control in Healthcare Facilities

2. Treatment Costs And Budgetary Constraints

Another key consideration is what your budget will allow as far as treatment costs. Treatment centers vary across a wide price spectrum, depending on the type. 

The cumulative cost of attending treatment for addiction and co-occurring disorders depends on the type of program, duration of treatment, and geographic location. 

In some parts of the country such as California, rehab tends to be more expensive, where the average cost of drug rehab without insurance is higher than average. 

In other parts of the country, such as New England rehab centers, you may be able to find a wider range of prices and payment plans.

Long-term residential treatment will typically be more expensive than 30-day inpatient rehab or outpatient programs that are shorter in duration and entail lower levels of intensive care.

Knowing what level of care you need and what services are included in the cost structure of the program can help you assess what is necessary and superfluous to your treatment experience. 

3. Health Insurance Coverage

Many private and nonprofit recovery centers accept certain insurance plans that will cover some if not all of the costs of rehab, although there are some that do not. 

Getting information from your insurance company and from rehabilitation centers under consideration will help you make an informed decision about where to get the most affordable treatment. 

If the treatment facility does not accept your health insurance plan, it’s best to look elsewhere.

4. Special Amenities And Services

There are standard services included in a treatment program, such as detox and addiction therapy, and there are additional amenities that veer toward the side of luxury.

While amenities such as massage therapy, acupuncture, yoga, and neurofeedback treatment are novel therapeutic approaches, they may not be integral to treatment. 

These extra services are often not included in the price structure, and getting a clear idea of what is included and what is extra can help you avoid incurring exorbitant costs beyond what is essential. 

If these holistic services are important to you, you’ll want to make sure you select an addiction treatment center that offers them.

5. Program Structure And Treatment Approaches

Many treatment programs follow the traditional 12-step recovery approach in combination with behavioral therapy techniques to address drug and alcohol addictions.

Programs also offer various evidence-based therapies, which are designed to address aspects of addiction, including substance use disorders and mental health disorders.

Treatment centers often use behavioral therapies such as:

Pharmacotherapy such as medication-assisted treatment (MAT) is another approach that is often used in tandem with behavioral therapies to facilitate abstinence.

6. Qualifications Of Clinical Staff

The clinical team of a treatment center includes therapists, counselors, case managers, and healthcare professionals who work closely with you or your loved one during treatment.

Therapists and addiction specialists should have sufficient experience and the essential minimum qualifications to be able to perform their jobs in a clinical setting. 

Qualifications for alcohol and drug abuse counselors vary per state. Research what those are and whether the clinical staff meets those criteria. 

7. External Accreditation And Recognition

Top-quality addiction treatment facilities will often hold awards, accreditations, certifications, and other important recognitions demonstrating the quality of care.

Some of the top recognitions a rehab center may possess include:

  • Joint Commission accreditation
  • CARF accreditation
  • accreditation from the Council on Accreditation
  • LegitScript certification
  • state-level certifications and accreditations
  • verification from Psychology Today

The Joint Commission is a nonprofit organization approved by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) that provides accreditation to over 20,000 healthcare facilities nationwide. 

The Behavioral Health Care Accreditation is designed for facilities that provide improvement-focused evaluations and behavioral health-specific approaches.

There is also the Accreditation for Opioid Treatment Programs, which is given to treatment providers who administer opioid agonist medication.

8. Reputation

Treatment facilities and centers that have been in operation develop reputations among patients and healthcare professionals that specialize in addiction medicine.

You can investigate the reputation of a treatment center by:

  • reading online reviews from previous patients
  • reviewing testimonials on the treatment facility’s website
  • speaking with providers who are familiar with their program and quality of care

While some reviews may be skewed or inaccurate,  you can get a general idea of sentiment from predominantly negative or positive feedback and media publicity. 

9. Aftercare Options

Aftercare is a crucial part of treatment and can be essential to relapse prevention and the sustainability of mental health with the continuity of individual and group therapy.

Many addiction treatment centers emphasize the importance of an aftercare program and include it as part of every patient’s individual treatment plan.

A treatment center should be forthcoming about the continuum of care they provide, and what they generally recommend for patients who successfully complete their program. 

Find The Right Addiction Treatment Center

Making the decision to attend treatment at a rehab center can change your life or the life of a loved one for the better, and it is normal to have high expectations for treatment.

If you or your loved one are ready to begin the search for an addiction rehab center, call the treatment specialists at Northeast Addictions Treatment Center today.

We offer everything from standard outpatient to partial hospitalization programs for addiction recovery. Reach out to our helpline to learn more about your options.

Keep Reading:


National Institute on Drug Abuse – Behavioral Therapies
Healthcare.gov – Mental health and substance abuse health coverage options

Written by
Northeast Addition Editorial Team

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This page does not provide medical advice.