Intensive Outpatient Treatment for Adults with Substance Use and Co-Occurring Disorders
True North’s Adult IOP is led by its founder Kansas Cafferty, LMFT, CATC, NCAAC, MCA. Kansas brings over 18 years of direct experience in providing addiction treatment services at some of the finest programs in the country. Kansas, a renowned expert in the field of substance abuse treatment is also a Commissioner to the National Certification Commission of Addiction Professionals for NAADAC. He has been published in Counselor Magazine and Addiction Professional Magazine; the two most read publications in the addiction treatment industry. His feature articles in both have been related to alcohol and drug treatment. Kansas’ expertise in this field is fueled by his inherent passion for treatment as well as his own long-term recovery from addiction.
Process Orientated Approach and Small Groups
Where some IOP’s will pack as many as 25 people into a room and call it a group session, we do not believe this is effective group therapy. This is potentially a good size for a classroom, but not for a therapeutic experience. Groups in the True North Intensive Outpatient Program have 4-7 members. They are constructed so that each member of the group can receive the attention they deserve. By maintaining a process-oriented approach, each person is able to work on their individual issues with the assistance of the group and the counseling staff. Maintaining small groups ensures that each and every person, no matter how shy, anxious, or quiet they are, is given the space they need to explore the issues in their lives that cause them discomfort, stress, difficulty, and potentially relapses. We are effective at aiding our patients in discovering the relapse dynamics that begin early on in the relapse process. Identification of triggers, while important, is not the true art of relapse prevention. Identifying personal relapse dynamics and attaining appropriate insight into their management is a far more difficult task and it happens to be where the staff at True North shines. This requires a therapeutic context where a person is able to explore the difficulties in their day to day lives as well as their past. Process groups are quite effective for this purpose. The interventions employed by our staff in these groups are as individualized as the members of the group. While one person may respond well to cognitive-behavioral examination of their issues, another may be far more open to an emotionally focused approach. By utilizing a process orientation, the staff if able to hand pick the approaches that work for each person. True North is not a “cookie cutter” or “conveyer belt” program. It is a dynamic experience that is fueled by its participants.
I just left rehab, why do I need outpatient?
We like to view intensive outpatient treatment much like one would view an internship experience. Many of our patients come to us following an intensive treatment experience where they have learned a great deal about recovery and about the disease of addiction. Some of our patients refer to residential treatment as “recovering in the bubble.” This is their acknowledgment of both the therapeutic safety of their residential program as well as their observation that this is an environment where using the tools they are learning is within a controlled environment and is not the same as having to do this in their everyday lives. In their everyday lives it is not uncommon to find that it is often much more difficult than they imagined. In the worst case scenarios, they realize this when they have already used drugs and/or alcohol again despite stringent efforts and desire not to. Intensive outpatient is crucial to learning how live life as a recovering person in real time, in the patient’s real life. Intensive Outpatient is the internship for the recovering person. It is where they come to process successes and mistakes in the early recovery process. They receive guidance and are alerted to red flags in their recovery. Some might say that outpatient, is “where the rubber meets the road.”