Often More about Money than Helping People

The alcohol and drug treatment industry is enormous and highly profitable, but very competitive. To lure patients or clients, many rehabs and retreats use misrepresentation and deception. There’s little regulation, deception is common, and it’s a case of caveat emptor, or buyer beware.

Companies may devise new names for their programs or activities to mislead customers. Companies may claim high success rates based on virtually meaningless surveys of past clients. (How many people will honestly report that they have failed to achieve sobriety or a clean lifestyle?) Some companies routinely use their own employees for testimonials as former clients without disclosing that they are actually on the company payroll.

Some sales offices present themselves as referral services when they are owned by the rehab companies that own them. Others get a financial “kick back” for recommending some companies but not others. That’s great for them but bad for consumers. Another problem is kick-backs from detox centers to rehabs for referrals. Again, that’s bad for consumers.

In reality, few people need a rehab, retreat, or treatment center. Most can benefit from free or economical programs such as the free HAMS (Harm reduction, Abstinence, and Moderation Support), LifeRing Recovery, Women for Sobriety, Moderation Management, Rational Recovery, SMART Recovery (Self-Management and Recovery Training), SOS (Secular Organizations for Sobriety) and the Life Process Program.

With any of these flexible programs, people can avoid the unnecessary expense, inconvenience, long travel, disruption to their lives, and anxiety about living among strangers in a retreat or rehab.

Disclaimer: This website is informational only. It makes no suggestions or recommendations about alcohol, drinking, rehabs, programs, or any other matter and none should be inferred. Neither this website nor your host receives any compensation, directly or indirectly, from listing or describing any program. Such listing or description does not imply endorsement. [+]

Filed Under: Issues