Gateway Foundation— Aurora Philosophy
Since 1968 our goal has been straightforward: help clients get their life back on track and achieve a life of sobriety, free from drug use and symptoms of mental illness. A life that is productive, socially responsible, and healthy. Gateway Foundation is the largest nonprofit treatment provider in the U.S. specializing in substance use disorders for men, women, adolescents, and clients diagnosed with co-occurring mental health disorders. Gateway's professional clinicians support over 6000 people a day to successfully complete treatment by developing a personalized plan to treat the underlying causes of substance use disorder —not just their addiction to drugs or alcohol.
Areas of Specialization
Intensive Outpatient Drug & Alcohol Treatment
In an Intensive Outpatient treatment program, individuals participate in group and family counseling sessions several times per week, as well as one-on-one counseling sessions with their primary counselor. Treatment is usually four sessions per week that are three hours each, based on an individual's needs.
Dual Diagnosis Program
Co-occurring disorders can be difficult to diagnose because of the complexity of symptoms. There are many possible combinations of dual diagnoses, which means there are many possible symptoms. Today, addiction and psychiatric health are viewed more as part of a continuum, and clinicians are specially trained to deal with patients who have a co-occurring disorder. We are certified as one of the only dual diagnosis rehab centers in the Midwest
Meet the Staff
Dr. Thomas Britton
President & CEO
Dr. Thomas Britton began his career in behavioral health as a counselor where he developed a passion for effectively treating individuals with co-occurring substance use and mental health disorders. For more than twenty years, Dr. Britton has been dedicated to helping others through various roles as a therapist, crisis worker, educator, clinical supervisor, executive director and most recently president for a division of Acadia Health Care. Dr. Britton believes strongly in the power of recovery, so much that in 2006, he founded a North Carolina organization that advocates for treatment for those without resources. His devotion to the field and a commitment to learning led him to earn a Master's Degree in both Addiction and Marriage and Family Therapy from Appalachian State University in Boone, NC. Understanding the importance of strong leadership skills, Dr. Britton went on to earn a Doctorate in Public Health, Executive Management from Gillings School of Global Health at University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC. Dr. Britton has aligned his personal mission to help others with his life's work. From his early days as a clinician, to his present leadership role, his focus remains on helping individuals and their families get their lives back on track.
Dr. Roueen Rafeyan
Chief Medical Officer
Dr. Rafeyan brings over 20 years of specialized experience to Gateway, having served as a medical director for psychiatric and substance use programs at leading Illinois healthcare institutions including Rush, Michael Reese, Resurrection and Presence Behavioral Health. As CMO, Dr. Rafeyan is responsible for continuously advancing Gateway's wide array of services, upholding medical protocols, policies and procedures, as well as working closely with Gateway's team of experienced physicians/clinicians to deliver comprehensive high quality addictions, psychiatric and medical services/treatment as needed for each individual. In addition to Dr. Rafeyan's extensive medical experience, he is also a diplomat of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology as well as the American Society of Addiction Medicine. He is currently on the faculty of Northwestern University and an active member of the American Medical Association, the American Psychiatry Association, the Illinois Psychiatric Society and the Illinois State Medical Society.
Rehabs.com 360 Guide
ABOUT GATEWAY FOUNDATION - AURORA
Located 40 miles west of Chicago, Gateway Foundation - Aurora is one of 14 centers operated by the Illinois-based substance abuse treatment provider. Set on the campus of the Presence Health Hospital, the facility offers multiple programs for individuals struggling with chemical dependency and co-occurring mental health disorders. The continuum of services for adults includes a short-term residential and partial hospitalization program (PHP) as well as intensive outpatient programs (IOP). It also offers medication-assisted treatment (MAT) to ease symptoms of withdrawal.
TREATMENT & ASSESSMENT
For clinicians to determine the most appropriate care, clients participate in an initial assessment. Those requiring the highest level of treatment may be referred to the residential program, which is offered in both co-ed and all-male settings. Medication, including Suboxone and Vivitrol, may be prescribed to individuals experiencing symptoms of withdrawal from opioids or alcohol. In Illinois, the facility is among the 20.2 percent of facilities to utilize Suboxone.
Most inpatient clients stay on-site for two to four weeks. During this time, they participate in individual, group, and family counseling. Residents are also introduced to the principles and practices of 12-Step, as well as engage in recreational and team-building activities. Program graduates are eligible for aftercare support, such as weekly group counseling sessions and 12-step meetings.
Clients with a strong support system and a stable living environment may opt for the full-day PHP or half-day IOP, which offer similar programming, but at less cost and more flexibility. Most outpatient clients remain in treatment for up to six weeks. PHP or IOP may also be utilizes as a "step-down" measure from inpatient care.
Gateway Foundation is accredited by The Joint Commission which, in the state of Illinois, is among 22.5 percent of substance abuse treatment facilities that have this designation. The multidisciplinary treatment team includes psychiatrists, physicians, registered nurses, and licensed professional counselors.
ACCOMMODATIONS & AMENITIES
A modern, single-story building, the Aurora facility houses residential clients in double-occupancy bedrooms outfitted with twin beds, simple furniture, and work stations. Residents have 24-hour medical attention, as needed, and take their meals in a cafeteria-style dining hall. The facility offers comfortable communal areas with televisions, and residents have access to sprawling lawns that surround the facility.
WHAT ALUMNI SAY
Three alumni who submitted reviews to Rehabs.com about Gateway Foundation - Aurora to date provided mixed feedback: two positive, one negative. Both Mary and H.H. awarded the facility perfect five stars for the major categories of survey: treatment effectiveness, accommodations and amenities, and meals and nutrition. They both would recommend the center, which H.H. described as a “great place and works if you work with it,” which merited four out of five stars for affordability, connectivity/visitor policy, staff experience and training, and three stars for facility cleanliness and upkeep and family participation.
Although Mary rated several metrics the five stars, including conflict resolution, consistency, lead counselor, and overall group counseling, this former client felt the program failed to treat post traumatic stress disorders (PTSD). Negative reviewer G.T. gave the program’s treatment effectiveness just two out of five stars and wrote: “I spent 18 days at Gateway before moving on to a ‘Class’ facility.”
Reviews on secondary sites revealed polarized opinions: 3.6 out of five stars based on 17 Google reviews, 4.6 stars based on 15 reviews on the facility's unofficial Facebook page, and three one-star ratings based on Yelp.    Positive reviewers praised the caring staff and comprehensive program, which some deemed life-changing and life-saving, such as Annie: “This place saved my life. The staff is amazing.” In contrast, others complained about the strict structure and lack of amenities, likening it to a prison, such as one-star reviewer Eric: “Prison might be the best comparison. The director and counselors are horrific and vengeful. The food inedible.”
WHAT FRIENDS & FAMILY SAY
Two loved ones polled by Rehabs.com at the time of this writing both reported relapses. One alum disapproved of the staff’s treatment of residents and felt that the co-ed program was “a bad idea.” “Wish they were more supportive and offered more family support and involvement,” the loved one wrote. Jonathon reported billing problems and wrote: “This treatment center did nothing for my brother. He lost his life last year and these people are still billing him.”
Gateway Foundation accepts most private insurance plans, including Aetna, Cigna, and Multiplan. Individuals without insurance may be eligible for state funding via the Illinois Department of Human Services.
Published on October 2018
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