The problem of substance abuse and addiction costs Americans and American institutions over $740 billion every year. More than 20% of the federal budget is dedicated to tackling the problem with both controversial methods and controversial results. Despite all of this effort, according to a National Survey on Drug and Health (NSDUH) estimate, approximately 22 million Americans age 12 and over are battling a substance abuse disorder at any given time.
A problem of this magnitude deserves serious attention, and a great many dedicated and talented people have dedicated their lives to helping those suffering from addiction to recover and regain their normal lives. Still, with all this money and effort going to the fight against addiction, there are a number of different approaches and schools of thought being brought to bear on the issue.
In recent years the science of addiction medicine has led to the rise of what we call evidence-based treatment. This has brought the addiction treatment community to large areas of consensus regarding what works and what does not. But despite all we have learned, recovering from addiction is a deeply personal and private process, and results can be extremely subjective. Therefore, we find it worthwhile to keep readers up to date with lists of the most effective and well-regarded addiction and substance abuse programs in the country.
Below are ten of the top-ranked drug rehab and addiction treatment facilities in the U.S. This list is based on the experience and the opinion of professionals in the field of addiction treatment and recovery. Results will vary by individual experience.
Considerations are based on the following criteria:
- Accreditation by JCAHO or CARF
- Evidence-Based Treatments
- Clinical Staff Quality and Professionalism
- State-of-the-Art Treatments
- Individualized Treatment Plans
- High Success Rates
- Co-Occurring Programs
- Nonprofit Organization
- Compassionate Approach
- Years in service
- Good Reviews
All facilities and programs listed are accredited by the Joint Commission.
#10 The Meadows
This premium drug rehab facility is located on a 14-acre campus in the sprawling Sonora desert of Arizona. The program employs both alternative and traditional therapies for an inclusive and far-reaching total approach. They offer all of their patients the latest, cutting-edge treatments in an intensive and personalized fashion that is optimized for success based on science and experience.
In their 40+ years of operation, The Meadows has maintained one of the highest success rates in the nation. They achieve this by focusing on the root causes of substance abuse and addiction. Their treatment model places a focus on considering the impact of abuse, trauma, mental illness, depression, and other underlying issues. Recognizing that no person is an isolated unit, the staff and program are oriented toward healing families and community re-integration.
The types of therapy offered include; the 12 step model, The Emotional Freedom Technique, Equine Therapy, EDMR, Expressive Arts Therapy, a Family Week program, Small Group Therapy Sessions, Nutrition Consultation, Spiritual Counseling, Neurobehavioral Therapy, and more.
The Meadows campus is a sprawling and open environment featuring sports and leisure facilities and acres of expansive space. They offer an engaging and ongoing calendar of events and many critical resources to help their clients on the road to recovery.
Their clinical and executive staff is composed of highly experienced medical professions specializing in behavioral treatment, cognitive therapy, and addiction medicine.
#9 Alo House
Based in beautiful Malibu California, the Alo House bases its work in non-judgmental and loving support. With a focus on departing from what they consider to be the traditional “compliance model” of drug abuse and addiction treatment, Alo House focuses on providing clients and patients with a more personable and acceptance-based approach. They look on traditional programs as leveraging clients with ‘forced abstinence’ and coercive methods and techniques.
Alo House believes that, while coercive techniques can produce effective detoxification results, they do not address underlying issues. By creating an atmosphere of community and providing the people they serve with the social support they need- the professionals at Alo House offer a feeling of belonging that is critical to a successful long-term recovery.
Our philosophy has to be translated into principles. These principles are how we act with our clients on a daily basis. Staff and clients, alike — the entire community of Alo House — are on a healing journey together, and we hold ourselves to the same principles that we teach our clients to exemplify. -Alo House
The facility is a world-class, luxury installment immediately adjacent to the pristine central California coastline. Patients will enjoy equine therapy, group therapy sessions, as well as cognitive and behavioral therapy between an endless sprawling hillside and miles of white sand.
The clinical staff is composed of more than 20 of the industry’s top ranking professionals dedicated to providing the personable approach that Alo House is famous for.
#8 The Harmony Foundation
Founded in 1969, the Harmony Foundation was designed and created by a group of Colorado men who were struggling with alcoholism. The men pooled their resources and created what is now one of the finest and most highly regarded substance abuse and addiction treatment programs in the country.
In the early days of Harmony Ranch, the men had set aside a simple hideaway where people struggling with alcoholism could come to escape the pressure of their peers and “dry out.” In time they set up AA meetings and provided better accommodations for those who were serious about resisting the temptations of alcohol.
In 2008, the Harmony Foundation expanded its detox facilities and onboarded a number of medical treatment programs including Subutex detox for those struggling with opioid addiction. With its roots in treating severe alcohol dependency, the Foundation is well suited to treating opioid-related dependency.
With more than 50 years of intensive experience in treating alcohol and opioid addiction, The Harmony Foundation has developed a reputation as one of the finest addiction treatment facilities in the US.
Located among the beautiful snow-capped mountains of Estes Park Colorado, alumni speak of the almost magical affinity they have developed with the location. With a community of more than 5,000 alumni and recovery professionals, Harmony Ranch is much more than a recovery center. It is a tight-knit extended family that is dedicated to supporting its members in their search for meaningful, and lasting recovery.
#7 Silver Hill Hospital
Silver Hill has the unusual distinction of dedicating all of its clinical resources to patient care. They place a special emphasis on treating each and every person they serve with dignity and respect. In an industry where too many patients fall through the cracks and are forgotten, these are far from meaningless platitudes.
The staff and team of Silver Hill take a multi-disciplinary approach to their work. This means delivering both evidence-based, scientific therapies and treatments as well as human-based support. One of the special aspects of Silver Hill’s approach is their focus on integrating the help of supportive family members. Because so much evidence indicating the importance of friends and family in addiction treatment has developed in recent years, this is not just an effort at humanizing the recovery experience- but it is also deeply scientific.
Silver Hill has been in the service of those suffering from substance abuse issues and addiction since 1931. As one of the longest running programs of its kind in America, Silver Hill has developed a reputation for excellence, as well as a longstanding culture of community and support.
The facility is a massive, pristine, multi-room house nestled in the warm and colorful woodlands of New Canaan Connecticut. The program offers specialized services for adults, teens, and support for those suffering from co-occurring disorders.
#6 The Ashley Addiction Treatment Center
As their motto, “Everything for recovery,” suggests- the people of Ashley adhere to the philosophy that addiction is not a choice- rather that it is a disease. They place a penchant on not blaming the addict for the disease of addiction. They place the emphasis on the need to choose to dedicate one’s self to a full, meaningful, and lasting recovery. In this way, they avoid depriving the patient of her or his personal agency, while absolving them of guilt. Theirs is a message of responsibility- not blame. It is a balance that is not only effective but has much support in the science of addiction medicine.
They offer comprehensive treatment for those suffering from addiction to alcohol, cocaine, heroin, amphetamines, opiates, and more. The program supports pain recovery treatment, a relapse program, family programs, services for young adults, and others- including a comprehensive outpatient program.
The Ashley Treatment Center is located on a scenic 147-acre campus nestled on the historic and beautiful shores of Northern Maryland. These tree-lined east-coast style shores and verdant woodlands overlook a bay dotted with intriguing little islands. The close proximity of the facility to Wilmington, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and the Washington DC area offers many wonderful outing opportunities and places many of its patients with the reach of supportive family and friends.
#5 Ascension: Brighton Hospital
The Ascension Brighton Center for Recovery places its focus on treating all of their patients with dignity and compassion. During its 60+ years of operation, the staff and facility have developed a well-earned reputation for excellence. They achieve this by combining personal experience and professional expertise and bringing these assets to bear in the treatment of substance abuse and addiction.
As the first addiction treatment facility to be licensed in the state of Michigan, Brighton Hospital is the second oldest addiction treatment center in the country.
As an advanced and forward-thinking treatment culture, the Ascension program staff remains ever mindful of the fact that simple abstinence from drug use is not enough. They place a special focus on replacing harmful behaviors and unhealthy habits that lead to substance abuse. Their holistic approach places a special emphasis on replacing bad habits with positive, life-affirming habits. In recent years, clinical researchers have found over and over that real meaningful, and natural, human social-reward systems can replace addiction-related behaviors when the patient is ready and willing to recover.
The staff pride themselves in their ability to establish a positive rapport with patients, and create a positive environment that stimulates recovery. The campus is centered around a white-steepled church, which serves as a meaningful centerpiece for those seeking spirituality oriented recovery.
#4 Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation
The name, Betty Ford, says it all. The Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is the largest nonprofit provider of addiction and substance abuse treatment in the nation.
The foundation was created in 1949. In 1982, the Betty Ford center was created and the organization now has 17 facilities in eight different states across the country. This massive organization has resources that enable its people to effectively address addiction, substance abuse, and mental disorders from prevention to treatment and through recovery- with robust capabilities on offer for each phase of need.
Their many assets include;
- The largest recovery publishing house in the country
- A fully-accredited addiction studies graduate school
- A dedicated addiction medicine research center
- Intensive study programs for medical students and professionals
- Community and early education-based prevention services and programs
- One of a kind family and children’s programs
- Enormous influence as an institute for recovery advocacy and drug policy policy
- The Betty Ford Foundation offers every type of addiction, substance abuse, and mental health treatment model in existence. With their massive resources and a vast network of professionals, patients have virtually unlimited opportunities to overcome dependency issues.
The program gives patients access to a broad range of events, meetings, outings, and other learning experiences. In-patient and outpatient facilities and services are arguably the most robust available.
#3 The Caron Foundation
A unique substance abuse and addiction treatment center, The Caron Foundation takes a progressive view of the conditions it treats and the people it serves. But their focus does not end with the treatment of alcohol and drug addiction. They place a special emphasis on a condition known as Addiction Interaction Disorder.
Introduced in 2011 by Dr. Patrick Carnes, Addiction Interaction Disorder could be said to have its roots in the Intersectionality school of social psychology. A.I.D. is concerned with the results and patterns that develop in co-occurring addictions and patterns of abuse. The theory posits that a person rarely comes into contact with her or his drug of choice as an isolated event. People encounter gateway drugs, drugs that tend to lead to the use of other drugs, and social settings that promote a range of unique social and internal conditions.
The Caron Foundation is concerned with serving the unique needs of people whose conditions can be understood through an Addiction Interaction Disorder oriented lens. Further, they place a special emphasis on working with those suffering from substance abuse and addiction within the LGBTQ community. In addition, they are also concerned with the effects and treatment of trauma as it relates to addiction and recovery.
With nine locations along the east coast of the United States, the staff and facilities of Caron offer a wealth of community services and recovery opportunities to the people it serves and their families.
#2 Cumberland Heights
This family-oriented addiction and substance abuse treatment facility works with entire families with resources for adults, teens, and families. The people and program of Cumberland look at addiction as a chronic and potentially fatal disease. With this focus, treatment and prevention are seen as non-negotiable.
According to the founders of the program, Robert Crichton, Sr. and Dr. Thomas Frist, Sr., they created Cumberland Heights; “[…] to offer a location and a program which will enable a man to go back to the primary meanings of his life so he can start over again.”
They place special emphasis on their core values, which are;
- Putting the patient first.
- Providing high-quality care throughout the continuum of services.
- Recognizing principles embodied of the 12-Steps as essential for lasting recovery.
- Providing a therapeutic environment conducive to the transforming power of spiritual awakening.
- Valuing the importance of family in the recovery process.
- Being grateful for those who support our mission and share our passion.
- Demonstrating the same care and respect to our employees that they offer to patients.
Their mission, “To transform lives, giving hope and healing to those affected by alcohol or drug addiction,” is made a reality by a team of nine of the region’s top-ranking drug and alcohol addiction treatment professionals. Cumberland is staffed by a robust group of men and women working closely with clients every day to support and promote a successful long-term recovery.
The facility is located on a magnificent 177-acre campus along the banks of the beautiful Cumberland River. The program features state of the art facilities with a vast array of recreation resources and amenities.
#1 The Cirque Lodge
Among the picturesque mountains and verdant woodlands of Sundance and Provost Canyon, the people and program of The Cirque Lodge addiction treatment program deliver a community-centered approach to recovery.
Founder, Richard Losee says,
Treatment needs to be effective, attractive, active, and enlightened, but most importantly it needs to be connected and continued with the community at large, long after they leave our program.
With a focus on creating an atmosphere of compassion, safety, dignity, and respect- the lodge lays down the necessary foundation for a recovery based on commonality support.
The program is designed to serve a range of treatment needs and modalities, including;
- Dual Diagnosis
- Cognitive Therapy
- Experimental Therapy
- Family Therapy
- Personalized Treatment
- Recovery Oriented Systems
Between their Lodge and Studio facilities, The Cirque Lodge offers a host of naturalistic and clinical treatment services and resources.