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Substance Abuse Intensive Outpatient Program

Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP)

Start rebuilding your personal life and mending your important family ties right away while living at home.   IOP allows you to establish a foundation for long term recovery support in your local community right from the start of your treatment instead of waiting until you return from living away in a rehab center.  To accommodate varying work schedules, groups sessions are offered twice daily – mornings and evenings.   It is also possible to switch back and forth depending on your needs.

Our intensive outpatient drug and alcohol rehab program provides evidenced-based (proven) treatment from licensed clinicians and certified addiction counselors.  While in IOP, your personal circumstances are considered in establishing a plan of care specific to your own individual needs and preferences.  Clients learn a range of valuable recovery skills in intensive outpatient treatment. These include:

  • Coping with alcohol and drug cravings
  • Coping with other conditions, such as depression, anxiety and bipolar disorder
  • Practicing effective communication and improving relationships with loved ones
  • Identifying ways to improve trust
  • Finding healthy ways to reduce and cope with stress
  • Identifying triggers and learning healthy ways to deal with them
  • Improving decision-making abilities
  • Improving self-esteem
  • Learning about medications that can support long-term recovery
  • Improving overall health and wellness
  • Learning relapse prevention techniques

Our most popular and most effective program consists of 30 sessions, 3 hours each, over a 6-week period (usually Monday through Friday). IOP may be recommended for those who do not need medically-supervised detox. IOP can also enable people in recovery to continue their recovery therapies following successful detox, on a part-time yet intensive schedule, designed to accommodate work and family life.

Recovery involves the whole family and/or social support system, therefore we offer a weekly Family Workshop for all close friends, employers, and family members.  This workshop has received numerous accolades over the past 20 years for its ability to educate and teach loved ones how to be supportive without nagging and controlling.  It meets on Wednesdays, 7 – 8:30 p.m.  and is offered at no extra charge for one year or more if needed.

The flexible schedule of this program allows for full-time employees or the unemployed to attend, either9am - 12 noon or 6pm - 9pm.

Long-term sobriety requires ongoing, intensive treatment and a strong support network.  In our IOP, clients develop the skills and relationships needed to sustain recovery from alcohol and other drug use while keeping up with job, school and family commitments.

If the client has medical insurance that covers substance abuse treatment, the client is only responsible for co-pays and deductibles. If not, Steppingstones has self-pay options which most people find affordable.  



Steppingstones is confident of its program effectiveness and offers a guarantee to all clients! If a relapse occurs within one year of discharge, Steppingstones will give at no charge a one-week "booster" program to focus on relapse prevention, provided that treatment was completed and discharge recommendations were followed as mutually agreed upon! We know of no other facility which backs its program with such a warranty!



Statistics prove that recovery from substance abuse is a long-term process, therefore Steppingstones is committed to maintaining close relationships with its clients for a year after discharge from treatment by offering once-weekly attendance for NO EXTRA CHARGE! Commitment to our clients is lifelong.



Outpatient Counseling

Outpatient Counseling

Some of you may be seeking treatment only for concerns unrelated to addiction such as post-partum depression, mood changes, adjustment issues, bipolar disorder, marital or relationship problems; Steppingstones employs several licensed counselors who provide individual counseling sessions and also accept most insurance plans.
When you have both a substance abuse problem and a mental health issue such as depression, bipolar disorder, or anxiety, it is called a co-occurring disorder or dual diagnosis. Because there are many combinations of disorders that can occur, the symptoms of dual diagnosis vary widely.

A Co-Occurring Disorder is a very broad category; it can range from someone developing mild depression because of binge drinking, to someone’s symptoms of bipolar disorder becoming more severe when that person abuses heroin during periods of mania. Either mental illness or substance abuse can develop first. Untreated co-occurring disorders can lead to major problems at home and work and in your daily life, so it’s important to seek help.

The best treatment for co-occurring disorders is an integrated approach, where both the substance abuse problem and the mental disorder are treated simultaneously, often lowering costs and creating better outcomes.
With proper treatment, support, and self-help strategies, you can reclaim your life. Recovery depends on treating both the addiction and the mental health problem.

Getting sober is only the beginning. Your continued recovery depends on continuing mental health treatment, learning healthier coping strategies, and making better decisions when dealing with life’s challenges.


Psychiatric Treatment

You may have already encountered a challenge in trying to find psychiatric help for yourself in the CSRA. While Augusta has trained physicians who specialize in mental health and addiction medicine, people continually face long waiting lists when trying to obtain psychiatric appointments. Steppingstones uses a tele-psychiatrist out of Atlanta, allowing you the option to see a psychiatrist within 2-days of making an initial appointment at our office for an affordable rate.


Family Services

All of our staff are fully trained to include your family member(s) in your treatment; some family members seek services independently of their loved one, and some wish to be a part of your recovery. Recovery involves the whole family and/or social support system, therefore we offer a weekly Family Workshop for all close friends, employers, and family members. This workshop has received numerous accolades over the past 20 years for its ability to educate and teach loved ones how to be supportive without nagging and controlling, with hundreds of parents, spouses, and friends expressing emotional relief after utilizing the principles taught. It meets on Wednesdays, 7 – 8:30 p.m. and is offered at no extra charge for one year or more if needed.


Men’s Residential Services

Steppingstones contracts with The Awakening Center, a local supportive, structured living environment for men who are new in their recovery from alcohol and/or drugs, whose mission is to assist men with substance abuse problems to be restored to productive functioning members of society. Clients reside in one of three houses on 5 acres of land in a semi-rural area not from the Augusta Mall.

The arrangement is an affordable and unique alternative to inpatient hospitalization for men who do not need the level of medical monitoring that inpatient hospitalization offers, but however need watchful oversight, while learning proven methods of recovery from addictive diseases. Clients are housed in the recovery residence near the treatment center where the 6 week CARF accredited (Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities) and state-licensed treatment program is offered. The treatment program itself is covered by most major insurance companies, though insurance has never been known to cover the residential portion of the fees over the past few years that have seen major and sweeping changes in insurance reimbursement.

While most people are in treatment for approximately 6-weeks, there are some who benefit from continued supervision during the crucial early months of recovery and sobriety. There is an option to continue to live in the recovery residence, to learn and practice recovery principles. Statistics demonstrate a correlation between early relapse-prevention and long-term sobriety.

This program utilizes oversight, coaching, and teaching based on 12-step self-help recovery while simultaneously encouraging spiritual growth via attendance at faith-based recovery groups in addition to public programs such as AA/NA. The residence has 6 beds only and mimics a home-like environment intended to prepare each client to return to his own home, fully prepared to handle the expectations of balancing skills needed to maintain a job and be present for his family.

Residential responsibilities and interaction is a vital part of recovery to instill positive life skills into the residents. Clients progress through a phase system of growth and as progress is made, privileges are earned.



DUI Evaluations

Most states assume that a DUI conviction is evidence of a drinking problem. The purpose of a DUI evaluation is to conduct an initial screening to obtain significant and relevant information from a DUI offender about the nature and extent of the use of alcohol or other drugs.

Before returning driving privileges to someone convicted of driving under the influence, most states require that drivers undergo an evaluation to determine the extent their lives are affected by alcohol consumption and if their drinking behavior is considered alcohol abuse or alcohol dependence. The evaluator then determines if the offender requires additional education or treatment.

Depending on the driver's evaluation, the required treatment can range from attending a number of support group meetings, outpatient counseling or therapy sessions, or even inpatient detoxification and/or a residential rehabilitation and treatment facility.


Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) 

Substance abuse evaluations consistent with NRC regulations are provided by a Substance Abuse Expert (SAE).


Court Evaluations

The criminal justice system frequently requires that a mental health and substance abuse evaluation be completed to determine the extent of any of these issues. A meaningful intervention can often help the individual to head down a different path.

When a substance abuse evaluation is requested by a judge, probation officer, lawyer, employer, or an individual, we conduct a formal assessment which includes the following as needed:

·         Clinical Interview

·         Standardized Diagnostic Testing

·         Collateral Interviews

·         Review of Previous Reports

·         Written Report with Recommendations

·         Court Appearances


Mental Health Evaluations

A mental health assessment gives your doctor an overall picture of how well you feel emotionally and how well you are able to think, reason, and remember (cognitive functioning). Your doctor will ask you questions and examine you. You might answer some of the doctor's questions in writing. Your doctor will pay attention to how you look and your mood, behavior, thinking, reasoning, memory, and ability to express yourself. Your doctor will also ask questions about how you get along with other people, including your family and friends. Sometimes the assessment includes lab tests, such as blood or urine tests.

A mental health assessment can help diagnose:

·         Mental health problems, such as anxiety disorders, depression, schizophrenia, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, conduct disorder, bipolar disorders, and eating disorders.

·         Developmental problems, such as learning disabilities, intellectual disability, and autism.

·         Substance abuse, including alcohol and drug abuse and dependence.

·         Diseases of the nervous system, such as Alzheimer's disease, Huntington's disease, Parkinson's disease, and epilepsy.

·         Other problems, such as thyroid disease and brain tumors.


DOT evaluations

 The Department of Transportation has six entities which are required to have alcohol and drug testing programs. These entities are1) The Federal Motor Carriers Safety Administration (FMCSA); 2) The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA); 3) The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA); 4) The Federal Transit Administration (FTA); 5) The United States Coast Guard (USCG); and 6) The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA).

Employees whose jobs are regulated by the DOT are required to submit to various types of alcohol or drug tests: random, post-accident, pre-employment, reasonable suspicion, return-to-duty. Refusal to test produces the same result as a positive drug test and is a violation of federal law.

When an Employee has a violation, such as a positive test result, they are required to see a Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) which has become qualified through the Department of Transportation.