A Step In The Right Direction Philosophy
A Step in the Right Direction provide substance abuse disorder treatment programs for co-ed, mixed age groups. Treatment options include assessment, intervention, individualized care plans, outpatient, intensive outpatient and partial hospitalization programs, chemical dependency treatment, life and coping skills, addiction education, anger management, individual and group therapy, 12-Step meetings and luxury transitional living.
Areas of Specialization
Facilities that offer “holistic therapy” see and treat patients in the context of their entire lives and health status. They treat the “whole person,” not just the addiction.
Patients who undergo intensive outpatient treatment continue to live at home and sometimes go to school or work while participating in a highly structured treatment protocol that is focused on ending substance abuse. Programs vary in terms of how much treatment patients receive, how often and for how long. Some facilities design individualized intensive outpatient treatment programs.
Meet the Staff
Ms. Ruzich is the Founder and Executive Director of A Step In The Right Direction and has been working in the recovery field for over 30 years. She has assembled a distinguished team of experts made up of doctors – psychologists, psychiatrists, master’s level therapists and highly educated professionals with wide-ranging experience in treating cases of substance abuse and co-occurring disorders.
Dr. Jennifer Mather
Dr. Mather started her educational career at the London University in London, England. After completing her undergraduate requirements, she returned home to the United States to complete her Bachelors of Psychology with an emphasis in Law and Criminal Behavior at California Lutheran University.Dr. Mather then continued on to earn her Masters of Science in Clinical Psychology. During her doctoral training Dr. Mather completed an extensive internship at Aurora Vista Del Mar private psychiatric hospital. This training allowed Dr. Mather to treat many different types of clients with different issues ranging from substance abuse issues, schizophrenia, mood disorders, abuse, and trauma. She received her Doctorate in Clinical Psychology from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, a nationally accredited professional school. Dr. Mather’s treatment approach includes cognitive behavioral therapy, family systems, and motivational interviewing. Her focus is on irrational thoughts or distortions that drive or “fuel” impulsive behavior. “Understanding what purpose the behavior serves, even as unhealthy it may be, is a big part of the process. Changing distorted thoughts, thought stopping, and reframing, are just some of the interventions implemented in her treatment.
Rehabs.com 360 Guide
ABOUT A STEP IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION
Located in the suburban San Fernando Valley, north of Los Angeles, A Step In The Right Direction is a private facility treating men and woman struggling with addiction or a dual diagnosis, including treatment for PTSD and eating disorders. Services consist of outpatient-based detox (which is offered at just 15.1 percent of facilities in California), plus a range of outpatient programs and gender-separate, sober living facilities.
TREATMENT & ASSESSMENT
Treatment at A Step In The Right Direction uses both evidence-based practices and 12-step principles. Clients who need to detox will follow a tailored medical program, and will also be encouraged to enroll into an outpatient program to increase the likelihood that they stay sober.
The partial hospitalization program (PHP) offers the most intensive level of outpatient treatment, at 25 to 30 hours a week of programming, while the intensive outpatient program (IOP) meets three to five times per week. A less intensive, once per week outpatient program is designed as a step-down from the IOP.
Programs consist of individual and group therapy (including evidence-based techniques such as cognitive behavioral therapy, or CBT), addiction education, life skills workshops, and 12-step meetings. Families and friends are invited to treatment and encouraged to join self-help groups and 12-step meetings.
Other services offered include education and job planning assistance, interaction with a sober coach, and transportation to meetings and other recovery-oriented activities.
At A Step In The Right Direction, the staff-to-client ratio is 1:2, and the treatment team includes psychologists, psychiatrists, and master’s-level therapists. The single alum polled by Rehabs.com to date on the staff's level of training and experience gave this aspect of the facility five out of five stars.
ACCOMMODATIONS & AMENITIES
There are two sober living houses — one for women and one for men — which offer 30 beds in total. Both facilities are spacious family homes that offer either private or shared bedrooms and the option to bring a pet. The women’s house boasts an outdoor pool, and both facilities have outdoor space, TVs, and WiFi. Both homes encourage fellowship and peer-based community activities through weekly dinners, morning meditations, regular house meetings, and recreational activities.
WHAT ALUMNI SAY
Of the eight reviews submitted to Rehabs.com to date, three were positive and five were negative. Two of the three positive reviewers wrote that they had lived in the homes for extended periods — up to 16 months, in fact, remaining sober the entire time. All three of the program's reviewers praised the hardworking, attentive staff and the program's efficacy, and two praised the homes themselves. "Very well maintained and beautifully furnished... The staff is very gracious and concerned," Ted wrote in a representative comment.
But among the negative reviewers, there were repeated complaints of unprofessional behavior as well as strong language such as "horrible" and "the worst." Specific complaints include the owner's children living at the sober living facility, a lack of communication with clients, and minimal services. Alum J.P. even went so far as to say the facility was run by "scam artists."
A Step in the Right Direction has mixed reviews on secondary sites, with average ratings of 4.4 stars based on eight reviews on Facebook (where the center can manage its own page), 3.7 stars based on six reviews on Google, and 3.9 stars based on 16 reviews (including "not recommended" reviews) on Yelp.  
Several negative reviewers described the center as money hungry or similar, and more than one reported difficulties with the manager, echoing the complaint of a reviewer polled by Rehabs.com. But others praised the nurturing staff and described their stay as a life-changing experience. "I owe my life to this intensive outpatient program," Camren wrote in a representative comment on Facebook.
Like just over 53 percent of rehabs in the State of California, A Step in the Right Direction accepts numerous private insurance plans. The precise cost of treatment isn't currently available, but the single alum polled by Rehabs.com to date on the center's affordability gave it four out of five stars.
Published on July 2018
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