Finding a treatment facility can be challenging. There are many out there offering different services and making promises to those in need of immediate care. How does someone know which facility to entrust with their health?

The best thing someone can do is talk to an experienced individual who can walk them through the correct steps. Those who try to do this on their own might waste time and money because of a lack of knowledge. Our team can help individuals figure out what to do next.

At 449 Recovery, a “culture of caring” is at the heart and soul of everything we do. We encourage family members and struggling individuals to call us with any questions they have, even if they don’t intend to stay with us. We get how overwhelming it can be to navigate the healthcare world while faced with a crisis.

The following sections provide important information on how a person can find a competent, client-centered treatment center that is suited to treat a loved one’s condition.

The Search Should Be Taken Seriously

Choosing a good treatment program for mental health and addiction can be more involved than one would think. Facilities not only vary in the type of services they provide but in the quality and effectiveness of their care.

Unfortunately, some facilities have taken advantage of loopholes in the law, enabling them to exploit struggling individuals for a significant profit. This scheme happens around the country but most notably in South Florida. An article by NBC News titled “How to Find a Good Drug Treatment Program and Avoid the Bad Ones” explained how facilities have “billed insurance companies for millions of dollars worth of counseling and testing without helping addicts recover.”

Individuals who need care can be vulnerable to exploitation. They may be in a dark place or intoxicated. Family members should remain cautious and take some time to gather information so their loved one gets the treatment they need.

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Reviewing the Facility’s Website

Most people start their search online to find a facility’s website. Carefully review the information located on the homepage. Some tabs that are usually listed include:

  • Home
  • About Us
  • Our Team/Staff
  • Services/Programs
  • Disorders Treated
  • Resources
  • Gallery/Photos of the Facility
  • Contact Us

Make sure the information provided makes sense and is consistent. Websites that provide vague or ambiguous information should trigger a red flag. Treatment programs should be clearly described and it should be easy to get in touch with someone to learn more.

It can also be helpful to search their address online. Many facilities have a review page set up on Google, allowing potential clients to see what others have to say.

Other Things to Consider

The following are some questions to ask while looking at a facility’s website:

  • Do they treat the condition you or a loved one are struggling with?
  • Is their philosophy or clinical approach agreeable?
  • How many locations do they have? And are they in a reasonable location for you?
  • Is their program state or nationally recognized?
  • Does their website look unique and professional, or is it spammy and generic?


One of the most important things to determine is whether the facility’s programs and clinicians are:

  • Licensed
  • Accredited
  • Certified

For instance, 449 Recovery’s partial hospitalization (PHP) and intensive outpatient program (IOP) are licensed by the State of California. Licensure is mandatory and provides a facility with the legal rights to practice in a particular capacity. This also applies to some professional roles, such as a licensed marriage and family therapist.

Accreditation & Certifications

449 Recovery is accredited by The Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF). Accreditation is important because it recognizes a facility’s legitimacy within the healthcare industry. We are also associated with the National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers (NAATP).

Certifications are typically voluntary and are awarded to industry professionals that have undergone some sort of training to add to their qualifications. This information should be clearly stated on a facility’s website.

Who’s on the Team?

The facility’s website should have a section listing their counselors, therapists, clinicians, and other staff members. This may include photos of the staff members and a short biography describing their professional qualifications and years of experience. Personal background information is sometimes provided, such as whether members are in recovery themselves, have treated clients under unique circumstances or in foreign countries, and their life’s mission.


Taking a Look at Services

Knowing the types of care offered at a facility provides some initial insight into whether the facility might be an option.

At 449 Recovery, we primarily treat persons with mental health disorders who have been using substances to cope. As such, we offer two main levels of care, PHP and IOP. We also provide evidence-based and holistic therapies and believe the clients should be given a level of discretion in deciding their path to recovery. Therapeutic techniques can vary widely between modalities and may be useful for one aspect of a client’s concern but not another. This means that treatment goals are more likely to be achieved, especially when issues are complex and multifaceted.

Next Step: Give Them a Call

Reviewing a facility’s website is the first step toward finding a good treatment program for a loved one. However, the search shouldn’t stop there.

It’s also important to keep in mind the adage, “Don’t judge a book by its cover.” Some websites might not live up to expectations, but that doesn’t necessarily mean their treatment program is subpar. Some facilities are updating their site and this can take some time.

Give the facility a call to get a feel for their culture and treatment of potential clients. Ask any questions that couldn’t be answered from their website. Find out how long they’ve been serving the community, and what their client-to-staff ratio is. More staff means more attention to clients.

Some Red Flags

When browsing treatment facilities, consider the following situations that could suggest their program might not be the best.

The facility is willing to:

  • Cover the client’s travel expenses to their location
  • Pay for insurance coverage
  • Waive co-pays/deductibles
  • Cover the client’s rent in sober living homes (as long as they complete the treatment program)
  • Require frequent lab tests that cost thousands of dollars

By the same token, it is important not to jump to conclusions just because a facility is offering one or more of these things. Evaluate the program based on all of the things discussed here.

A facility may offer a particular service (like paying for travel expenses) as a legitimate part of its program. They may also provide financial assistance when and where it is needed within reason as 449 Recovery sometimes does. This is typically acceptable as long as the facility is not offering these things as a marketing inducement. One instance of when such offers are appropriate is when payment plans or ways to contribute toward that service (e.g., costs for Sober Living) are being discussed.

Those with a mental illness or addiction require compassionate, focused care. Not every facility can provide this. 449 Recovery is a licensed and accredited treatment center in Mission Viejo, Calif., that is committed to helping individuals heal from the emotional wounds experienced in life. We invite you to give us a call at (949) 435-7449 to learn how we can assist.