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    Drug and Alcohol Counseling Programs

    Expressive Arts and Addiction Treatment

    Alcohol and Drug Counseling Groups

    All groups include participants who come to First Step for a variety of reasons. Groups include people who choose to receive services because they have become uncomfortable with their use, or aren’t sure if the substance use is a problem. Clients and patients are also  referred by families, self-referrals, hospitals, job/employers, attorneys, probation officers, colleges and universities, high schools, DWI, other agencies and many other referral sources. Participating in group session helps clients learn from other group members about the consequences of each others substance use to help each other avoid many of the difficulties experienced by peer group members.  If the thought of joining a counseling group is uncomfortable, just let us know. We can work out alternatives to get you started. Family counseling services are also available. Family support is encouraged and available for all levels of care at First Step.

    Short-term Substance Abuse Treatment Program:

    As the result of your substance abuse assessment, you might be recommended to complete an early intervention Short-term Substance Abuse Treatment Program. You will be placed in a level of care in strictest accordance with guidelines issued by CARF (the Commission for Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities), person-centered practice, health insurance requirements, the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services and NC DWI Services.  First Step is fully licensed by the State of NC and accredited by CARF to ensure that your comprehensive assessment and the recommendation comply with all the highest standards of practice in the substance abuse treatment field.

    The First Step short-term program is a minimum of 20 hours but less than 40 hours, typically consisting on 20 – 30 hours depending on the outcome of the assessment.  The short term program consists of a Program Orientation and a minimum of seven 3-hour group counseling sessions, usually spread out over no less than 30 days. These groups meet on Six Forks Road in Raleigh on Monday and  Wednesday 6:30-9:30 PM or Tuesday and Thursday evenings from 6:30-9:30 PM in Raleigh. The Saturday morning session meets from 9:00 AM until 12:00 PM.

    Durham evening groups meet on Tuesday and Thursday evenings 6:00 – 9:00 pm. Garner groups also meet Monday, Tuesday and Thursday evenings 6:00 – 9:00 PM. Cary groups meet Monday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings. This group is typically mixed with the longer term program below.

    We will assist you in arranging a schedule that works best for you. If you are attending the program to meet NC DWI requirements, state law requires that you must complete the required number of hours in no less than 30 days for the short-term program.

    If finances are a concern, ask about working out a payment plan. If paying at group time, please arrive 15 minutes early to allow time to process payment. We are in network with most insurance companies and often there is little or no cost to the program participant. First Step bills your insurance for services to reduce your cost of your assessment, treatment and counseling.

    Longer term Substance Abuse Treatment Program:  

    As the result of your substance abuse assessment, you could be recommended to complete a longer-term substance abuse treatment program. You would be placed in this program in accordance with guidelines issued by the N.C. Department of Human Services, which regulates substance abuse I assessments and treatment. These guidelines are established by the State of NC and we use the same guidelines to place all clients and patients at First Step. The Longer Term, or sometimes referred to as Intermediate Level, consists of no less than 40 hours and no more than 89 hours of group substance abuse counseling.

    This program consists of a Program Orientation and a minimum of fourteen 3-hour sessions and an individual closing session, spread out over at least 60 days . Individual counseling sessions may also be recommended.  These groups meet on Six Forks Road in Raleigh on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings from 6:30-9:30 PM in Raleigh. There is a Saturday session that meets from 9:30 AM until 12:30 PM.

    Durham evening groups meet on Tuesday and Thursday evenings 6:00 – 9:00 pm. Garner groups also meet Monday, Tuesday and Thursday evenings 6:00 – 9:00 PM. Cary groups meet Monday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings.

    Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP):

    Many studies show that Intensive Outpatient Treatment spread out over at least 90 days, and a less intensive continued care afterwards, is the most successful form of substance abuse treatment. Studies show IOP may be more successful for long-term success than inpatient or residential treatment when participants complete  the recommended duration.  The best gauge to determine long-term success is how long a person will utilize continuing care and/or a community support program. The public sometimes hear how substance abuse treatment “doesn’t work” or has a low success rate. That is a mistaken belief. When a person completes treatment and continues care in an aftercare group and community support, the chances of long term sobriety and abstinence are very high. There is also a sentiment at times that a person “has tried treatment; it didn’t work” which is also a mistaken belief.  Research and our experience demonstrates that not giving up on treatment, even if there have been some return to use, will lead to long term success. The adage “keep coming back; it works if you work it” is true for treatment as well as community support programs.

    IOP typically consists of 20-30, 3-hour sessions of outpatient group counseling, completed in approximately 3 – 4 months. Groups meet Monday, Tuesday and Thursday evenings and Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings at our Raleigh Six Forks Road location. IOP meets in Durham and Garner on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday evenings from 6:00 – 9:00 PM and in Durham Monday, Wednesday & Friday mornings. Call today for more information.

    First Step offers weekday morning and Saturday morning substance abuse treatment programs for most levels of care. The Saturday morning groups are currently offered at our Raleigh Facility. The weekday morning alcohol and drug counseling groups meet Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings from 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM.   The Durham Morning Program meets Monday, Wednesday & Friday mornings. Durham evening program groups meet on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday evenings 6:00 – 9:00 pm. Garner groups meet Monday, Tuesday and Thursday evenings 6:00 – 9:00 PM. Cary groups meet Monday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings.Call us today for more information. (919) 833-8899 or email 1ststep@ firststepnc (Dot) com.  For more information call (919) 419-0229 or email 1ststep@ firststepnc (Dot) com.

    Alcohol and Drug Education, Prime for Life, Alcohol and Drug Education Traffic School (ADETS):  First Step provides several alcohol and drug education programs that satisfy court, job, schools, probation, DWI, and other requirements. Our Durham facility has an Alcohol & Drug Education program approved by the courts. The cost is $150 that may be paid in payments if paying the full amount all at once is too expensive. The program consists of four 2 1/2 hour sessions and you may be able to complete in less than a week to meet court requirements quickly and for a very low cost. ADETS is the education level for DWI clients. The cost of ADETS is $160. Prime for Life is available at all our locations for others needing substance abuse education for $185.

    Insurance will pay a significant portion of, and sometimes the entire, cost of the your outpatient treatment  and supportive counseling services at First Step.  Check with your insurance company or call us if you have questions. Insurance will pay for counseling groups but not “ADETS” (Alcohol/Drug Education Traffic School) or Prime For Life education programs.  Usually a co-pay is required by your insurance but sometimes they pay 100%.  Often times your insurance company will also allow reimbursement for your assessment, but only if you enroll in the program within a short time after the assessment. If that is the case, the money that is reimbursed by insurance will be applied to group session co-pays, or if your insurance pays the entire cost, you will receive reimbursement for you cost. Insurance typically does not pay for assessments unless the person enrolls and starts the group program.

    FOR NC DWI CLIENTS ONLY:  The State of North Carolina DWI Services requires all agencies providing services for  DWI in NC to collect a $100 fee for a DWI assessment, even if one has insurance. NC DWI law states DWI clients must complete the required number of hours in no less than 30, 60 or 90 days, depending on the recommended number of hours. NC DHHS DWI Services also requires no less than weekly attendance to complete State DWI requirements. All clients are generally recommended to complete counseling in a similar amount of time because these guidelines usually have excellent results for participants. However, all recommendations are determined by the counselor at the time of the assessment, if all the supportive paperwork is available. First Step is licensed by the NC Department of Health and Human Services to provide substance abuse outpatient counseling services to clients who have received an NC DWI. The State of NC has established a fee of $100 for all DWI substance abuse assessments statewide. This fee applies to every DWI program in the State of NC and is strictly enforced by NC DWI Services. No one should ever be charged more or less than $100 no matter where one receives an assessment for an NC DWI.  If the DWI was received an another state, fees will likely vary among agencies throughout the state.

    If money is tight, you can sometimes work out a payment plan for counseling groups so you can get your treatment hours completed. Completion paperwork and reports are not final until all fees are paid.  Payment can be made by insurance, check, cash, credit/debit card or money order.

    To sign in and get proper credit for your group, please arrive 15 minutes early to allow time to process payment.

    Contact the First Step facility closest to you today for more information.
    Raleigh: (919) 833-8899 Cary: (919) 651-8349 Garner: (919) 329-9400 Durham: (919) 419-0229

    We are in network most Healthcare Policies at all our locations:
    Accepted Insurance programs.

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  • The counselors were great and very open minded because everyone has a different situation. Overall it was a great experience; I would want to comeback but only to visit!


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