Discovery Institute Philosophy
The Discovery Institute views dependence as a disorder of the “whole person” affecting every aspect of his or her behavior, belief system, and lifestyle. This disorder is profound in nature and has a negative impact on one’s self, family, and society as a whole. Discovery has come to recognize that this condition affects people many ways, which causes our treatment approach to be designed to address any and all issues that support and contribute to addiction. A primary emphasis is placed on the importance of the individual to seek and incorporate a change in his or her behavior, attitude, and lifestyle.
Discovery’s holistic treatment initiatives will be all encompassing in nature due to addiction affecting so many aspects of an individual’s life. This allows Discovery to not only treat addiction, but address significant related issues based on the individual needs.
Areas of Specialization
Some facilities have an addiction treatment protocol that all patients or clients are expected to follow, while others customize or individualize treatment based on a person’s unique needs and circumstances. Factors that may affect treatment decisions include age, lifestyle, medical conditions, type of drug, religious beliefs, etc.
Drugs and alcohol have widespread effects throughout your body, including but not limited to the addiction and/or physical/psychological dependence that develops with substance abuse over time. Many organ systems are affected by addiction and will react to withdrawal. The term “medical detoxification” means that there is a trained and licensed medical professional onsite to monitor your vital signs and protect your physical and emotional health as your body goes through withdrawal.
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ABOUT DISCOVERY INSTITUTE
Founded in 1970 as a state-operated facility, today Discovery Institute is a private nonprofit offering medical detox and a variety of residential, outpatient, and intensive outpatient programs (IOP) for adults struggling with substance abuse or a co-occurring mental health disorder. Set on 10 rural acres in Central New Jersey, the private nonprofit also runs a separate 16-bed sober living facility for men. It is one of only 28 residential facilities in New Jersey that offer on-site detox programs.
TREATMENT & ASSESSMENT
Clients begin their assessment with an initial phone evaluation, which is then followed by an in-person interview with a staff psychiatrist. Programming is both holistic in nature and highly structured. On a regular basis, clients attend 12-step support meetings, daily psychoeducational seminars and lectures, as well as group and individual therapy with their primary counselor. Holistic offerings include yoga and nutritional counseling, nutritional counseling, and emotional counseling.
The program is a collaborative attempt to gain understanding of addiction and is run by a community of peers who are themselves in recovery. With guidance from professional staff and clinicians, residents are responsible for pacing their own recovery. It should be noted that the center also conducts random urine tests and drug screenings.
For those seeking a step-down option from inpatient care, there is an intensive outpatient program (IOP) that meets for nine hours of treatment per week, as well as a traditional outpatient track that runs once or twice a week. Both options are suitable for residents of Discovery Institute’s sober living homes as they transition back into “the real world.”
Prior to leaving, each client works together with their primary counselor to develop a continuing care plan (CCP), outlining aftercare treatment, place of residence, and local support meetings.
Treatment teams include a psychiatrist, medical staff, and master’s level clinicians and counselors. The six individuals polled on the matter appreciated the aptitude of staff.
Staff Experience and Training: 4.3/5
ACCOMMODATIONS & AMENITIES
Pictures published on the two-story facility’s web page indicated an exercise room and simple bedrooms with single beds, drawers underneath, and a night table. For residents, an initial 72-hour “black-out period” means limited communication with loved ones. Transportation is provided for outpatient clients. Overall, individuals polled on the matter appreciated the quality of the facility.
Facility Cleanliness and Upkeep: 4.3/5
WHAT ALUMNI SAY
Feedback from alumni is largely positive. Overall, alumni found treatment very effective, though many were unimpressed with the quality of meals, accommodations, and holistic options. S.M.G., who credited the center with saving their life, wrote: “They are a bare bones facility that cares for the individual.”
In a more mixed review, alum Jared called the center “a blessing and a curse.” He celebrated the “awesome” nurses, but felt that the counselor was so busy that “setting up after care is extremely difficult and there are no groups or meetings really.” And Caril, wholly dissatisfied with her experience, wrote: “They just want the money. Horrible, disrespectful,” without adding further details.
Reviews from secondary sites were more mixed. On Google, 23 individuals gave an average rating of three stars out of five. "Just want you to know this place is not qualified to take care of the addiction problem that has manifested itself in the state of NJ," Tina wrote. "Money is all they care about!!!" Several other individuals disagreed, including Gerald, who called the staff "very encouraging and sympathetic."
WHAT FRIENDS & FAMILY SAY
Of the six reviews received by Rehabs.com to date, five were positive. Most of the individuals polled on a variety of the facility’s offerings gave perfect five-star ratings for the family programming and its counseling options, though one dissenting reviewer, who primarily gave one-star ratings for these categories, succinctly wrote: “The counseling was weak.” Loved ones also offered more moderate ratings for the facility's holistic offerings.
Counseling Options: 4.6/5
Family Participation: 4.2/5
Holistic Offerings: 3.2/5
“They teach all the skills needed to live a drug free life,” one anonymous reviewer wrote. Reviewer Alexandra added: “The staff is phanominal… Extremely caring and kind.”
Despite these positive trends, parent G.K.D. wrote: “Poor treatment plan… Our son was not medicated with his mood stabilizer during his stay which in turn caused him to act out.”
Fees are determined on a sliding scale. Discovery Institute accepts private pay and insurance from “most of the leading insurance providers in the country"including United Healthcare, Blue Corr/Blue Shield, Aetna, and more. Discovery receives funding from county, state, and federal resources to makes its services more accessible.
Published on June 2018
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