During the intake process, patients will be guided through diagnostic tests, personal histories, logistical financial arrangements and care coordination before they begin to explore all that the drug rehabilitation process has to offer. Below, we’ve outlined the main occurrences involved during intake at drug treatment programs.
Personal Addiction History
One of the first aspects covered when you begin the intake process at a residential drug treatment program involves giving a personal history of past drug use and summarizing its effects on your life. You may often be asked about why you are currently seeking out treatment, when you began using drugs and when you realized that your drug abuse had become a problem. You might also be asked many personal questions about your drug use—including drugs of choice, methodologies of ingestion, frequency of use and amount of usage. While these may be difficult questions to face, they help your treatment team at your residential drug treatment program frame their approach to your recovery. Additionally, answering these questions begins to break down the wall of denial that often surrounds chemical dependency.
Diagnostic and Drug Testing
At the majority of drug treatment programs, a battery of diagnostic tests will be performed, as well. This allows treating staff to test for drugs present in the system, physical issues that may complicate treatment or damage from drug addiction that needs to be repaired. Pregnancy tests, sexually transmitted disease tests, blood chemistry tests and organ or glandular function tests may be performed. Additionally, psychological testing, interviews and assessment may also be performed, in order to spotlight cases of dual diagnosis, or uncover potential core causes for drug addiction that will be resolved through targeted treatment.
Summary of Previous Treatment
Another area of inquiry is about any previous drug or alcohol treatment stays or outpatient services you may have completed in the past. Such treatments may include inpatient and outpatient programs, health education classes or self-imposed drug-free periods.
Relapse does not represent a personal failure or an inability for sobriety, but rather the need for further treatment to properly diagnose and resolve issues around drug dependency.
Medical History Summary and Physical Exam
The intake team and doctors need to understand your medical history in order to properly diagnose any underlying physical issues that may relate to your drug addiction or its treatment. Your honesty is critical during this process, enabling trained medical professionals to understand your physical responses and potential complications to the detoxification process. By understanding you and your body, the medical team can assess and tailor your treatment to you as an individual – and help your physical self heal from the damage years of drug addiction has caused.
Financial Information, Care Coordination and Check-in
When you check into a residential alcohol treatment center, you will generally take care of the financial details up-front, during the intake process if you haven’t already accomplished this process online or by phone. This expedient settling of financials allows you to focus on the rest of your intake period on recovery rather than logistics. Once insurance and financial information has been obtained, individuals usually meet with their care coordinator – an individual assigned as a point person, responsible for liaisoning between the patient and treatment team. After meeting with your care coordinator for an overview of treatment, you will generally receive a facilities tour, room assignment and orientation packet, welcoming you to the drug treatment facility.