Madigan Army Medical Center opened a new substance abuse residential treatment facility on Joint Base Lewis-McChord Jan. 21.
The 28-day voluntary program provides inpatient drug and alcohol substance abuse treatment to active-duty service members from the west coast of the United States as well as Hawaii, Korea and Japan.
“This facility, hopefully, is going to change lives,” said Col. Michael Place, the Madigan commander. “It’s going to give people an opportunity to make themselves all over again.”
A recent Army-wide Health of the Force survey revealed two percent of active-duty Soldiers are diagnosed with a substance abuse disorder. Another “healthy percentage” of Soldiers, who aren’t diagnosed, also struggle with addiction, said Maj. Gen. William Fuller, I Corps deputy commanding general.
“If you don’t treat this, it can ruin people’s lives, wreck their careers, and it’s also a real risk for the health and safety of our whole force,” Fuller said, noting that the residential treatment facility will increase Soldiers’ readiness.
Prior to the opening of the Madigan residential treatment facility, service members who needed residential substance abuse treatment were referred to civilian facilities. While the centers provided quality care, the separation from families and chains of command was detrimental to service members, Fuller said.
“We’re going to bring all of those folks back into the fold, and then incorporate as we often do the families of those service members that are oftentimes the critical linchpin to their success,” Place said.
Madigan was referring nine service members a month to civilian facilities, according to Place. The Madigan residential treatment facility can now treat 12 patients at a time, and will increase its capability to 18 patients by 2017.
The residential treatment facility program focuses on evidence-based interventions for reducing substance use, using a team approach to develop each patient’s recovery plan. Patients receive a full spectrum of services, to include medication treatments, motivational enhancement therapy and relapse prevention services, as well as spiritual counseling, and physical, occupational and recreational therapy.
While the program offers individual and group therapy, it also recognizes the importance of units, families and communities in supporting service members’ sober lifestyles after treatment. To that end, the residential treatment facility offers 12-step recovery models and conducts rehabilitation meetings with command teams.
It also encourages patients
to involve their families in
their recoveries and offers
families therapeutic support as well.
Active-duty service members who would like to participate in the Madigan residential treatment facility program must first get referred through service-specific programs for alcohol and drug treatment, such
as the Army Substance Abuse Program.