Because we have worked in the monitoring field, we know how to talk to the referring employers or concerned parties; we understand their needs. This is something most other treatment centers don’t have
Los Angeles, CA (Vocus) December 15, 2009
Promises Treatment Centers has developed a comprehensive professionals’ program for physicians, attorneys, and other high-profile professionals with substance abuse issues. The treatment team works together to meet the specific needs of these professionals, with the understanding that not only their health, but their livelihood may be at stake.
The program is led by Dr. Michel Sucher, Physician Health Director at Promises and President of Greenberg & Sucher Addiction Medicine, who has been working in the addiction field for over 20 years, primarily treating doctors, dentists, and other professionals with substance abuse problems. Dr. Sucher also runs a monitoring program for physicians in Arizona, and has been working directly with Promises since April 2009 to help them implement the professionals’ program.
In many cases, clients are referred to the professionals’ program at Promises because concerns have been raised that their professional conduct may be putting their health or safety at risk. This may be due to drug or alcohol abuse, or to other psychological issues. In some cases, addiction may be undermining their practice or business.
“Typically something happens, such as a professional is arrested for driving under the influence or is caught forging prescriptions, and he or she is referred to the state’s licensing board or to a professional health program (PHP). Or an employer becomes concerned because they smell alcohol on the professional’s breath or medication is missing,” explained Dr. Sucher.
Promises has over 20 years of experience treating highly successful professionals in business, the arts, and entertainment who have a strong need for privacy and confidentiality. Physicians and attorneys prefer an environment that offers privacy and personal attention in a serene location, which Promises provides. Professionals benefit from intensive individual therapy and complementary, restorative therapies such as acupuncture, massage, meditation, and neurofeedback.
Dr. David Sack, CEO of Promises, has over two decades of experience in addiction treatment, as well as a unique understanding of professionals with addiction. Dr. Sack wanted to create the best possible environment to deal empathetically with professionals who have real concerns about the impact of substance abuse on their continued ability to practice their profession.
“We also recognize that health care professionals often have difficulty accepting treatment by other physicians. With Dr. Sucher’s extraordinary experience, we have built a treatment model that helps these professionals overcome their resistance to therapy,” explained Dr. Sack. “We understand that their ultimate goal is to return to a productive career or practice.”
After being referred to Promises, often through an employer, state licensing board, or PHP, clients undergo a 96-hour assessment, which looks for medical, psychiatric, psychological, and social functioning issues. Many times addiction masks underlying issues such as depression, anxiety, or trauma. It is critical to indentify and treat these issues to improve the chances of long-term recovery.
“We are here to give a thorough and thoughtful assessment,” explained Dr. Sack. “Our goal is to make recommendations that will help the professional return safely to his or her practice.”
Whether the professional client is referred by his or her employer, state licensing board, or a PHP, Promises knows how to effectively communicate their progress in treatment and to support and monitor their recovery after leaving primary treatment.
“Because we have worked in the monitoring field, we know how to talk to the referring employers or concerned parties; we understand their needs. This is something most other treatment centers don’t have,” said Dr. Sucher.
Promises is an ideal location for a professionals’ program for many reasons, including its small size, individualized treatment, and outstanding reputation.
“While at Promises, professionals undergo intensive therapy with a recovering psychiatrist who has been through the diversion program,” explained Jamie Deans, National Professionals Program Manager at Promises. “They also participate in abstinence-oriented peer support meetings and Caduceus meetings.”
“Most professionals come to Promises thinking that their life as they knew it is over, that they’ll never practice medicine again, or that patients won’t want to see them because of their addiction,” said Dr Sucher. “But with these peer-to-peer support groups, clients see people who are at the very beginning of treatment as well as people who have been going to AA meetings for 20 years. They see how to rebuild their lives or create something they never had.”
Dr. Sucher is actively involved in a client’s transition back to work, and many clients also take advantage of the executive coaching Promises offers. The executive coach is also available to meet with the employer or hospital as part of the reintegration process.
“We’re able to tell clients exactly what to expect because many of us have been through it,” added Dr. Sucher. “Because I run a monitoring program and meet with each patient regularly, I can tell them what’s going to happen next and what to expect. Most treatment programs don’t have that, and they don’t have people who can help them understand what comes after treatment, which is what they’re most afraid of.”
Promises Treatment Centers is part of Elements Behavioral Health, which aims to fill the gaps in mental health treatment between inpatient and outpatient psychiatric services; in co-occurring mental health and substance abuse disorders; and between traditional and alternative settings to help clients that are underweight or overweight due to eating related and other issues. The goal is for full recovery and well being with permanent life change and life style improvement and not just symptom reduction. Our focus is not only on the patient, but on the health and support of the family system. For more information about the treatment program for professionals please contact Jamie Deans, National Professionals Program Manager, at 310.633.0294 .To learn more about Promises visit http://www.promises.com or call 866.466.1276.