Individuals struggling with substance use disorder (SUD) or dual diagnosis may have difficulty coping with everyday challenges without the guidance of certified addiction recovery specialists. Clinician-driven treatment programs provide clients with support and the skills to navigate recovery successfully. According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), “Treatment enables people to counteract addiction’s disruptive effects on their brain and behavior and regain control of their lives.” Clinicians are experts in their field and provide clients with the tools and resources they need to heal. The care team at New Creation uses evidence-based and alternative holistic therapies to guide clients through treatment.
A healthy therapeutic alliance between clients and clinicians is essential to long-term recovery for individuals with SUD. According to Frontiers in Psychiatry, “Numerous empirical studies emphasize the substantial relationship between therapeutic alliance and positive treatment outcomes, independent of potential confounders such as cultural background, therapist profile, type of treatment or research design.” The client-clinician relationship impacts program retention rates and long-term recovery. Clinicians collaborate with clients to ensure they receive the most effective care during treatment.
Understanding Clinician-Driven Treatment for Substance Abuse
SUD generally requires multiple levels of care to reduce the risk of relapse during early recovery. Addiction affects all areas of a person’s life, making it essential for clinicians to address any maladaptive behaviors, beliefs, or thought patterns. Rehabilitation programs must also consider the medical, mental health, social, and family needs of clients participating in treatment. Clinicians have the expertise and training to provide a whole-person approach to care.
Some of the modalities and services offered at New Creation include:
- Medically assisted detox
- Trauma treatment
- Family therapy
- Group and individual therapy
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT)
- Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT)
- Case management
- Aftercare planning
- Alternative holistic therapies
Clinicians use integrative care to provide clients with comprehensive treatment and services. Every doctor, nurse, therapist, and member of the support staff works together to ensure a holistic and positive recovery experience for clients diagnosed with SUD and co-occurring mental health disorders.
The Clinician’s Role in Treatment
Clinicians play a pivotal role in treatment. Clients and their families may not know what to expect from treatment or how to manage their condition. Often, clients are more likely to engage in their own recovery and maintain healthy routines after rehabilitation if they experience informed treatment under the care of qualified clinicians. In addition, clinician-driven care ensures that science-based methodologies are used to educate and treat clients with SUD.
Clinicians provide the following to clients during treatment:
- Access to resources
- Emotional, practical, and medical support
- An accurate diagnosis
- Prognosis based on experience and scientific facts
Clinicians are trained to provide the highest level of care to clients and their families. Ethical, compassionate, and empathetic treatment ensures clients feel more comfortable relying on their care team.
Providing Quality Clinician-Driven Treatment
Patient-centered care is an essential part of providing quality clinician-driven treatment. According to the Journal of General Internal Medicine, “Quality is often defined as providing the right care in the right way at the right time, but a patient-centered vision would define quality as providing the care that the patient needs in the manner the patient desires at the time the patient desires.” Clients and clinicians want the best outcome possible, meaning, in most cases, both definitions apply during treatment. New Creation prioritizes clinician-driven care by collaborating closely with clients and their families.
Personalized Care and Monitoring Progress in Clinician-Driven Treatment
Individualized care has become the standard for most community-based and private rehabilitation programs. Research has shown personalized treatment provides clients with better long-term outcomes, especially when clients participate in long-term programs. Individuals struggling with SUD often take years to seek treatment. Recovering from the emotional and physical damage caused by substance abuse may take months or years of personalized care.
Progress monitoring is essential for clients attending long-term care programs. According to Behavioral Sciences, “If it takes three to five years to achieve addiction recovery, then it is apparent that recovery support monitoring and timely relapse-intervention services are essential tools for helping addicts in recovery to sustain post-treatment SUD abstinence.” Tailored care makes it easier for clinicians to track changes over time and adjust treatment plans.
4 Essential Aspects of Clinical Assessment and Diagnosis
Clinical assessments ensure clients receive an accurate diagnosis and prognosis for their condition. Treatment is only effective if the services are appropriate for a person’s circumstances. Misdiagnosis is harmful and may cause people to relapse or drop out of treatment. New Creation uses comprehensive assessments and screening tools to accurately diagnose every client. Below are four ways clinicians ensure clients receive appropriate care.
#1. Initial Assessments Direct Treatment
Clients entering treatment undergo an initial assessment to determine what primary issues require treatment. Clinicians use information learned in the evaluation to identify underlying issues and co-occurring disorders. Once clinicians make a diagnosis, they provide knowledge and guidance to ensure clients make educated decisions about their health and well-being. Clients have control over the direction of their treatment at New Creation.
Clinicians generally require the following information during intake assessments:
- A list of substances taken in the last several weeks, including over-the-counter medications
- Emergency contact details
- Contact information for primary care physicians, therapists, or relevant medical professionals
- List of symptoms, side effects, and any previously diagnosed conditions
- Information on general health, moods, and behaviors
- Details about any family history of substance abuse or mental health disorders
The more clinicians learn about clients during the initial assessment, the easier it is for them to create a tailored care plan.
#2. Importance of Evidence-Based Diagnostic Criteria
Clinical diagnostic criteria must be evidence-based to ensure clients receive the proper treatment for their condition. Non-clinical diagnosis of symptoms can lead to misdiagnosis and unhelpful or counterproductive treatments. New Creation uses the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Edition (DSM-5), and other evidence-based tools to diagnose SUD and co-occurring mental health disorders.
Using evidence-based diagnostic criteria ensures the following:
- Every member of the care team is on the same page
- Clients have a precise diagnosis to inform their decisions
- A clear prognosis based on known facts about the disorder
Detox and other stages of recovery are more effective when the care team has an accurate diagnosis.
#3. Dual Diagnosis in Clinician-Driven Treatment
Clients diagnosed with co-occurring SUD and mental health disorders generally require higher levels of care and more comprehensive treatment programs. According to NIDA, “The diagnosis and treatment of comorbid substance use disorders and mental illness are complex because it is often difficult to disentangle overlapping symptoms.” New Creation uses comprehensive assessments and screening tools to reduce the risk of misdiagnosis.
#4. Clinician-Driven Treatment Planning
Treatment planning is a collaborative effort between clients and the care team. Often, treatment planning begins during the initial assessment after the client has been diagnosed.
Clinician-driven treatment planning involves the following:
- Ensuring clients and their loved ones fully understand the diagnosis
- Educating clients and their loved ones on potential complications
- Informing clients of various treatment options and their benefits
- Providing clients with information about New Creation programs
Clinician-driven treatment is essential to ensure clients with dual diagnosis receive the level of support they need to successfully heal and manage their condition long-term.
Implementing Best Practices in Clinician Driven Treatment
New Creation uses best practices to create a welcoming and nurturing environment where clients gain the skills to manage their condition. Some of the best practices used to ensure a positive treatment experience include:
- Tailored treatment plans and progress monitoring
- Offering alternative treatments at every level of care
- Psychoeducation to ensure clients make informed decisions
- Optimizing patient care
- Relying on evidence-based methodologies to treat SUD and co-occurring disorders
Most families experiencing substance abuse have difficulty healing without the assistance of trained addiction and mental health professionals. Clients rely on clinicians to provide essential insights and context for their condition. Rehabilitation programs are more effective when clients clearly understand their diagnosis and the various treatment options available during early recovery.
Collaborating With Clients to Create a Comprehensive Treatment Plan
People with SUD or dual diagnosis may benefit from prescription medications to help them manage symptoms or health side effects. Some individuals may need to slowly taper off addictive substances using medication-assisted treatment (MAT). New Creation refers clients to suitable programs if they require MAT or more intensive, medically supervised treatment. Individualized care plans make it easier for the clinical team to identify which clients may benefit from prescription medications and other forms of treatment during early recovery.
Clinicians work with clients and their families to develop comprehensive treatment plans, which often include:
- Personal goals for recovery
- Mental health goals
- Relapse prevention and crisis management strategies
- Medication management
Aftercare planning is also important. The clinical team guides clients through creating a care plan for every level of treatment during recovery.
Relapse Prevention Strategies in Clinician-Driven Treatment
Up to 60% of individuals undergoing treatment may experience some form of relapse. The high relapse rate in the first few months of recovery increases the risk of severe illness, injury, overdose, or death. Relapse prevention is one of the primary goals of recovery treatment. Studies have shown that “Substance use disorder treatment is designed to help individuals stop or reduce harmful substance misuse, improve their health and social function, and manage their risk for relapse.” Clinicians support this goal by providing essential relapse prevention education.
A few relapse prevention strategies clinicians use to help clients maintain abstinence include:
- Therapy to address underlying issues and provide skill development, including healthy coping mechanisms
- Monitoring moods, behaviors, and thoughts to identify potential issues and take action before they become a problem
- Medications to help reduce cravings, intrusive thoughts, compulsions, and impulsive behaviors
A strong support system is essential for relapse prevention. According to the Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine, “The key to relapse prevention is to understand that relapse happens gradually,” often beginning “weeks and sometime months before an individual picks up a drink or drug.” Support systems provide outside objective perspectives. Sometimes, friends, family, and therapists detect gradual changes that a client may not notice themselves. Relapse prevention education ensures clients understand the importance of self-monitoring and checking in regularly with their support system.
Ensuring Effective and Appropriate Treatment
Clinicians ensure clients have access to effective, appropriate, and affordable care. Treatment plans meet clients where they are today and create a roadmap to long-term recovery. The care team ensures proper care by speaking with clients and their loved ones to determine all factors affecting the individual’s recovery. Clinicians are obligated to stay informed of advances or changes in addiction recovery and mental health treatment to ensure they follow best practices.
Ethical Concerns in Clinician-Driven Treatment
Clinicians at every stage of treatment must provide ethical care. According to Medical Principles and Practice, “Ethics is an inherent and inseparable part of clinical medicine as the physician has an ethical obligation (i) to benefit the patient, (ii) to avoid or minimize harm, and to (iii) respect the values and preferences of the patient.” Clinicians must consider physical, emotional, spiritual, and cultural preferences when creating personalized care plans.
The care team at New Creation practices the following ethical principles:
- Client consent
- Client rights
Ethical clinicians consider how every interaction and choice may affect the client’s well-being. According to the previously mentioned article in Medical Principles and Practice, “The virtues of compassion, discernment, trustworthiness, integrity, and conscientiousness are the necessary building blocks for the virtue of caring.” Clinicians at New Creation care about every client and family seeking help with addiction and mental health issues.
Challenges in Clinician Driven Treatment
Treatment for substance abuse and dual diagnosis can be challenging. Many factors affect how a person reacts to withdrawal and treatment. Clinicians are responsible for addressing any complications or client concerns.
Some common challenges clinicians face include:
- Balancing safety with client autonomy
- Finding ways to keep clients and their families motivated and engaged during treatment
- Personalizing treatment to address co-occurring and underlying issues
Clinicians have to juggle ethical obligations and client expectations. However, their training and experience allow clinicians to take these challenges in stride. The care team at New Creation helps clients navigate the recovery process through every step of treatment and aftercare, providing compassionate and comprehensive care.
Overcoming Client Bias and Stigmas
Client education is vital to combatting social stigmas and disinformation surrounding addiction recovery and mental health. The clinical team uses psychotherapy, peer support, and other methods to address self-stigma and client biases.
Some common stigmas people internalize include:
- “Addiction is a choice and doesn’t require treatment. People can choose to stop abusing alcohol or drugs.”
- “Alcohol or drug abuse is untreatable, and anyone with SUD cannot recover from the disorder.”
- “Only certain types of people develop addictive behaviors.”
- “People with SUD are dangerous.”
According to Current Opinions in Psychiatry, “Studies consistently show that the public holds highly stigmatizing attitudes towards substance use disorders.” Research shows, “Stigmatizing attitudes towards substance abusers include perceiving them as dangerous, unpredictable, unable to make decisions, to blame for their own conditions, and a willingness to coerce treatment and maintain social distance.” New Creation understands the difficulties clients and their families face when unlearning these beliefs. Clinician-driven treatment educates clients and the community on the realities of addiction and recovery, reducing the spread of social stigma.
Clinician-Driven Treatment at New Creation
New Creation offers client-centered and clinician-driven treatment. The clinicians have decades of combined experience treating all forms of substance abuse and mental health disorders. The treatment center provides a full range of clinician-directed programs, including:
- Detox and withdrawal
- Alcohol and drug treatment
- Trauma treatment
- Dual diagnosis treatment
Clients choose from residential or outpatient programs. Every level of care offers comprehensive services and clinical support. New Creation considers each client’s unique needs during treatment planning to ensure they have access to a range of services meeting their specific needs.
A Healing Path Forward
Healing from substance abuse takes time and a willingness to change. The clinical team at New Creation gives each client the opportunity to build a solid foundation for a healthier future. After clients complete treatment, they transition to aftercare services. According to Alcohol Research Current Reviews, “Continuing care is widely believed to be an important component of effective treatment for substance use disorder, particularly for those individuals with greater problem severity.” Relapse prevention, skill development, and psychoeducation prepare clients for aftercare and long-term recovery.
Clinician-driven treatment is the best approach to rehabilitation because it allows clients to receive the most effective, appropriate, and efficient forms of treatment. Clients and their families may not be able to successfully navigate recovery independently. Clinicians provide essential insights, guidance, and education. The care team at New Creation ensures all clients and their loved ones have the resources and knowledge they need to make informed decisions about their health and treatment. Every program prioritizes a whole-person approach to care and personalized treatment planning. Clinician-driven care often provides clients with more comprehensive treatment and better outcomes. To learn more about our programs and services, call our office today at (877) 868-5730.