ABOUT BAY PINES VA HEALTHCARE SYSTEM – MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES
Bay Pines Veterans Affairs (VA) Healthcare System operates nine facilities, including a main medical center and a network of outpatient clinics, which serve veterans residing in 10 counties in central-southwest Florida. Its Mental Health Services division provides inpatient and outpatient treatment programs for military veterans struggling with chemical dependency, psychiatric disorders, and co-occurring disorders.
Medically monitored detoxification services are available on-site.
TREATMENT & ASSESSMENT
Clients may be referred by a physician or social worker or they may apply on their own for admission to the medical center’s Substance Abuse Treatment Program (SATP). Clinicians evaluate and work with vets to identify goals and an appropriate plan of treatment. Options include a 28-day residential rehabilitation program, 90-day intensive outpatient program (IOP), and structured 14-16 week outpatient program (OP).
The residential rehabilitation treatment program utilizes cognitive behavioral therapy andin a structured schedule of individual, group, and family counseling and 12-step sessions. The IOP follows the . Evidence-based therapies and drug testing combine to help clients focus on relapse prevention. IOP clients participate in up to 20 plus hours of clinical programming.
Bay Pines VA also offers an Opiate Substitution Clinic, which provides Suboxone treatment and outpatient counseling. Clients in all levels of care are encouraged to participate in community 12-step meetings.
The facility’s aftercare/continuing care for those who complete SATP offerings includes individual and group therapy as well as education. Veterans are encouraged to commit to participate in aftercare for 90 days after the initial phase of treatment as well as join SATP’s “Vet 2 Vet” peer recovery support groups.
Bay Pines VA Healthcare System employs a mental health treatment team comprising psychiatrists, psychologists, registered nurses, pharmacists, and social workers.
ACCOMMODATIONS & AMENITIES
The large medical campus is set on 337 acres by the Boca Ciega Bay in the Gulf of Mexico. Veterans in the residential rehabilitation program stay in Bay Pines VA’s Domiciliary building during treatment. They have access to recreational activity facilities on campus. Outpatient clients receive treatment both on campus and at other local clinics and may qualify for halfway housing placement in the community, if needed.
Feedback gathered through the Best-rehabs.com survey of five total alumni and loved ones to date indicated strong satisfaction with the quality of general accommodations, meals, and facility cleanliness and upkeep. Respondents provided ratings, on average, of 4.5 out of five stars for metrics measuring each of these features as well as opportunities for exercise and leisure.
WHAT ALUMNI SAY
Three alumni polled by Best-rehabs.com to date would strongly recommend the Bay Pines VA SATP and co-occurring disorders program. One alum identified counseling options as a strength, writing: “I loved that the VA recognized that one method of recovery may not work for everyone. They exposed us to several types of recover methods such as AA and Smart Recovery” and added “I found the combination was helpful and it was what helped me stay recovered.” Another alum wanted Best-rehabs.com to know a simple fact about the program: “Great leadership.” However, a metric rating the availability ofreceived low ratings from all three survey participants.
On its official Facebook page, which Bay Pines VA can manage, 672 reviewers awarded the facility an average of 3.9 out of five stars for a range of services, not specifically for the SATP.  Many described the staff as caring and respectful despite being busy. A recurrent theme was inconsistencies in appointment scheduling.
WHAT FRIENDS & FAMILY SAY
Two loved ones polled by Best-rehabs.com at the time of this writing offered generally positive feedback. They both awarded four and five out of five stars for treatment effectiveness, staff level of experience and training, cleanliness, and affordability. However, they indicated counseling options were limitedand noted the need for longer-term residential treatment. The sister of a former client told Best-rehabs.com: “Having substance abuse programs for veterans was great. Not having enough programs to help all the vets that need to enter into these treatment facilities. It helped my brother once-for three years.”
According to its website, the facility accepts private insurance plans and military benefits coverage.