ABOUT START: ST. ANTHONY RECOVERY AND TREATMENT
Operated by St. Anthony, a private, faith-based hospital system, START is a substance abuse program in Oklahoma City’s south side, only a few miles from Will Rogers World Airport. The facility provides medically supervised detox and both residential and outpatient treatment programs, but does not offer methadone for detoxification from opiates.
TREATMENT & ASSESSMENT
All clients undergo a free one-hour assessment with a licensed mental health professional prior to starting treatment. Length of stay is determined at this point.
While the program is guided by the 12-steps, clients also take part in group therapy sessions, educational lectures on addiction, and spiritual care groups. The facility opens its doors each Saturday for family lectures and sessions. Dual diagnoses are also treated here, though the program’s website notes that if a co-occurring condition requires medical attention, clients may first be referred to a medical unit prior to beginning treatment at START.
Aftercare plans vary, with recommendations to partial hospitalization (PHP) and intensive outpatient (IOP) programs on offer. All program graduates have access to ongoing support via the hospital’s weekly alumni group at no additional cost.
Per the hospital’s website, START treatment staff include physicians, nurses, psychiatric professionals, addiction counselors, dietitians, recreational therapists, occupational therapists, and chaplains.
ACCOMMODATIONS & AMENITIES
The facility’s website notes that this is a “hospital-based treatment program” so clients can expect to receive treatment in a rather clinical setting. Private rooms may be available, though they are allotted on a first come, first served basis. Clients may frequent the communal day room during leisure time and film showings are sometimes scheduled in the afternoon.
Visitation hours are arranged around the client’s schedule. Cell phones are not allowed, and the campus is entirely tobacco-free.
WHAT ALUMNI SAY
Alumni reviews are mostly positive, and paint a picture of a well-liked, though relatively basic treatment program. Clients generally gave four- and five-star ratings in categories including staff support, the staff’s level of training and experience, and the overall effectiveness of treatment, but often between one and three stars for holistic offerings and counseling options. “A very positive atmosphere during my stay,” recalled proud alum Mark. “Lots of interaction with counselors and other residents.”
“I definitely recommend outpatient therapy to those struggling with mental issues,” wrote another program alum. “This place was great at giving me information before starting, what to expect and prepare for. I was not looking forward to it at all, but came away with so much more thanks to the staff.”
Despite these positive reports, others felt the facility could do more. For example, though they called the facility doctor and counselors “awesome,” a third alum told Best-rehabs.com that “More holistic programs would have been good.” And while she found the one-on-one counseling “great,” former client Dawn felt that the program needed “more family [i]nvolvement.”
WHAT FRIENDS & FAMILY SAY
Reports from loved ones were more mixed. While two family members rated the accommodations and cleanliness generously and praised both the people and level of organization found at the facility, both complained.
One told Best-rehabs.com that “Family wasn’t involved all that much.” The other considered the facility “very organized” when it came to medicines and meals, but echoed some alumni complaints on the lack of variety in programming. “Not many programs to choose from, or activity,” they commented.
According to its website, START accepts most insurance plans, including Medicare and Medicaid, as well as self-payment. Counselors will contact new clients’ insurance companies on their behalf.