Phoenix House

Phoenix House


Located in Tuscaloosa, Ala., Phoenix House is a non-profit facility that provides a low-intensity, clinically managed residential program and transitional program for adult men and women struggling with chemical dependency, as well as co-occurring mental health concerns. Operating since the late 1960’s, the free-standing facility does not provide on-site detoxification services.


Before beginning treatment, clients participate in an initial biopsychosocial assessment to identify individual needs. Once specific issues are identified, the clients may be referred to the residential program or the less-intensive transitional program. Typically, the transitional program is appropriate for individuals who have completed primary treatment. If a client requires a heightened level of structure and supervision during early recovery, they may be referred to the clinically managed residential program.

Phoenix House’s residential program utilizes a range of evidence-based treatment techniques in a therapeutic community model of care. During residential treatment, clients adhere to a highly structured schedule of programming, which includes group, family, and individual counseling sessions to help clients recognize and modify the link between irrational thinking and addictive behavior. In addition, clients attend psycho-education classes, as well as workshops on living skills, decision-making, and relapse prevention.

Residents are also introduced to the principles and practices of 12-step fellowships. According to the facility’s website, Phoenix House facilitates a variety of self-help fellowships on-site, including Alcoholics Anonymous, Cocaine Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, and Celebrate Recovery (faith-based). Along with meetings, residents may study fellowship literature and perform associated “step-work.”

Along with counseling, educational classes, and 12-step immersion Phoenix House provides psychiatric evaluations and ongoing medication management for clients with co-occurring concerns. Once a resident completes the low-intensity residential program, clinicians may encourage clients to “step-down” to the facility’s transitional program.

During the transitional program, Phoenix House does provide provide linkages to community resources to support employment, as well as educational and/or vocational enhancement, which may include vocational training opportunities, G.E.D. classes, and referrals to local businesses who collaborate to support community reintegration. According to the facility’s website, the length of the residential and transitional program is determined by individual needs and the resident’s progress.


According to the facility’s website, Phoenix House employs a team of Qualified Substance Abuse Professionals (QSAP) and Certified Peer Support Specialists (CPSS). Residents also have access to consulting registered nurses and psychiatrists.


Comprised of two facilities, the primary residential facility and transitional home, Phoenix House of Tuscaloosa can accommodate up to 24 male and 16 female residents at a time. While information concerning the facility’s living arrangements and amenities is limited, the two alumni polled by at the time of this writing both rated the facility’s cleanliness and upkeep with four out of five stars.


The two alumni polled by generally praised most aspects of the program. One alum offered four-star ratings for the amount of family participation and the treatment staff’s level of experience and training. Citing the facility’s “transportation, meals, and one on one counseling” as facility strengths, the alum wrote: “Definitely a place to find a higher power and get it the routine of practicing steps 1-3.”

The other alum offered perfect five-star ratings for the treatment staff’s level of experience and training and the likelihood they’d recommend the facility to others. Although giving a moderate three-star rating for the facility’s counseling options, the alum simply wrote: “Treatment was effective.”

Secondary sources revealed generally positive opinions among alumni. On Google reviews, five alumni gave the facility an average rating of 3.4 out of five stars. “This place saved my life. Taught me how to live life without drugs and alcohol,” Lindsey, a representative reviewer, wrote. Negative ratings cited a lack of supervision and detoxification services as facility weaknesses.


Phoenix House of Tuscaloosa is supported in part by the United Way, private donations, and the State of Alabama. The facility charges a $125 admission fee, and program costs are determined by a sliding fee scale, based on the resident’s income, but not to exceed $500 per month. Clients are treated regardless of their ability to pay.


Phoenix House Reviews