Treatment Center Setting
Sunspire Health Desert Palms Philosophy
Sunspire Health Desert Palms is a licensed residential treatment facility offering individualized behavioral health treatment plans for men and women suffering from substance use and co-occurring mental health disorders. We provide a full continuum of integrated care that includes detox, residential treatment, Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP), and Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP). At Desert Palms, we treat addiction as a chronic illness, a disease as defined by ASAM as: "A primary, chronic disease with genetic, psychosocial, and environmental factors influencing its development and manifestations."
Areas of Specialization
Sexual Orientation & Gender Identity
Desert Palms caters to the needs of the LGBTQ community. Individual and group therapy focuses on the topics of sexual orientation and gender identity. Patients’ sensitive needs in treatment are addressed according to their gender identity and family of choice is respected.
Desert Palms staff is experienced in working with patients with a history of many types of trauma. Specializations include sexual trauma, military trauma and early life childhood experiences that must be addressed in therapy in order to attempt to overcome it and truly recover from addiction.
Desert Palms works with young adults ranging from 18 – 25 years old who enter the residential program for addiction and co-occurring disorders. By grouping young adults together in therapy, Desert Palms is able to facilitate and support conversations about struggles and triggers that are specific to this age group. Often, patients in recovery form lasting bonds and support networks that continue after treatment.
Patients who have been through treatment multiple times in the past need therapies specific to their experiences that will motivate them to actively engage in treatment in order to break the cycle of rehab and relapse that has brought them to Desert Palms.
Patients that have specific challenges related to mental health are given specialized treatment options that allow them to work on both addiction and mental health issues in one setting with specifically trained clinicians skilled in psychiatric care.
Detox is often the first level of a treatment plan. This period of no drug use is important for the patient to reach a stable state of mind and body to begin addiction treatment. Our clinical staff will guide and support the patient throughout the entire process.
During residential treatment patients live onsite in housing with access to care from clinical staff 24/7. Patients have a full schedule of individual and group therapies according to their unique treatment plan, preparing them for life in recovery.
To transition from residential treatment to life in recovery, patients go through a progression of care until reaching IOP. Patients will receive ongoing care at the Palm Desert IOP while living in sober housing to adjust to every day life after treatment.
Throughout treatment patients will work with a Discharge Planner and the clinical team to develop a comprehensive aftercare plan that will ensure a successful transition from residential treatment to a life in recovery. All patients who receive care at Sunspire Health will join our nationwide alumni network, giving them access to a support group after treatment.
At every Sunspire Health facility patients will receive treatment that is individualized to their unique needs and diverse lifestyles. Ongoing assessments allow the treatment to adapt and evolve as the patient progresses.
Sunspire Health utilizes evidence-based treatment methods, meaning that the treatment modalities and therapies are based on clinical evidence and proven success in guiding patients to heal and recover. Patients who would benefit from Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) will receive medications that are proven to aid patients in achieving sobriety.
In addition to individual and group therapies that are based in psychotherapy methods like CBT and DBT, patients will learn to apply new coping skills through experiential therapies like meditative hikes, yoga, fitness programs, nutrition education, and recreation activities that show patients how to find hope and how to prosper in recovery.
The majority of the staff at Sunspire Health Desert Palms has lived experience either with addiction or trauma, which allows them to approach the patients with compassion and deep understanding of the struggles they face.
When I decided to enter treatment it was during a time when I was in a dark and lost place in my life. I contacted the treatment consultant via phone and within an hour I was approved to enter treatment. I loved everything treatment had to offer from a nutritious and tasty meal plan, addiction information, meditation activities, equine, family therapy and individual therapy. My therapist was firm and genuine in all matters that concerned me and helped me to understand that this process is not about others but all about me and my perception. I had some fear of what I would do upon discharge, and that is when the Discharge Counselor stepped in and offered me IOP/Sober Living. This was huge because I was able to remain in a sober/safe environment. The alumni coordinator was the icing on the cake because she has great alumni opportunities in place to keep me involved. I simply loved my experience at DP and it has been definitely the foundation of my healthy recovery process.
Meet the Staff
Henry Bennett, MHS, ED
Henry shares with us over 30 years’ experience in all aspects of behavioral treatment and program management. He brings to Desert Palms, a track record of experience as an Executive Director, Company President, Chief Executive Officer, Program Director and other leadership roles in the behavioral health field. Henry is a strong patient advocate with demonstrated ability to ensure quality service delivery while meeting budgetary requirements.
His diverse experience includes success in both for-profit and non-profit organizations; broad-based executive operations experience; and has a proven record of expanding facility visibility, and increasing occupancy. He maintains active professional relations with national and regional contacts in the Behavioral Health Field.
Rebecca J. Gaba, PhD LMFT
ebecca Gaba became Clinical Director at Sunspire Health Desert Palms with nearly 30 years of experience in the non-profit mental health field, with the last decade spent honing her leadership skills in executive roles. Dr. Gaba implemented evidence-based practices, engaged program staff in a process of quality improvement for accountable care, and developed and implemented agency-wide systems for program and clinical evaluation. Dr. Gaba is innovative and open to change and has a “whatever it takes” approach to client care through service integration, training and collaboration.
Before coming to Sunspire Health, Dr. Gaba served as the Chief of Clinical Services at Momentum for Mental Health in San Jose, CA. Gaba received a PhD in Clinical Psychology from Fuller Seminary and an MS in Counseling Psychology from Mount St. Mary’s University in California, and she is a Licensed Family and Marriage Therapist.
Brett Drummond, RADT-I
Director of Admissions
As Director of Admissions, Brett Drummond is the first person patients interact with as they begin their journey to recovery at Sunspire Health Desert Palms. In this role, Brett is responsible for overseeing the admissions process, managing utilization review and referrals for admission at Desert Palms. With seven years of experience in the field of substance abuse treatment, his passion for helping individuals who are seeking treatment for substance use disorders motivates him each day. He began his career in addiction treatment as a chemical dependency technician at the Hazelden Betty Ford Center, working primarily with young adults in recovery. Brett advanced to management positions by leading fellow staff members to strive for a patient-driven approach to care, believing that the patient and their needs is top priority in treatment.
Director of Clinical Outreach
I was born and raised in the small town of Patterson in California’s San Joaquin Valley, to a farming family. My early days were spent on a tractor and showing registered sheep and horses. Hopes of becoming a veterinarian faded and after graduating from Sonoma State University, I was employed by several different advertising agencies in San Francisco working on creative campaigns for the likes of Beringer Wines, Kia Motors of America and Cisco Systems.
Ultimately, I longed to travel and see the world. That lead me to several positions in marketing and PR that took me to far off place like Sri Lanka, The UAE, Germany, Italy and the UK. For five years, I worked as Director of PR for a textile company based in France and lived in the beautiful port city of La Rochelle.
Two years ago I accepted a marketing position at another treatment facility where I honed my outreach skills and built many relationships in the industry which lead me to the Director of Clinical Outreach Position here at Sunspire Health.
At heart, I’m still an animal person – I have six rescue dogs and two adopted Love Birds and have a passion for helping find homes and bring awareness to unwanted and abused pets. Every year, I also spend a week of my vacation volunteering with my hometown 4-H club assisting children with their sheep project.
Rehabs.com 360 Guide
ABOUT SUNSPIRE HEALTH DESERT PALMS
Located 15 minutes outside of Palm Springs, Sunspire Health Desert Palms is a residential alcohol and drug abuse treatment center serving men and women. The Southern California facility emphasizes what it refers to as "tough" rehab work in a serene setting, with special care for LGBTQ individuals, young adults, and clients who struggle with chronic relapse. Detox services and integrated treatment for co-occurring substance use and other mental health disorders is provided. Sunspire Health also operates men's and women's treatment centers in Palm Beach Gardens (Recovery Road) and Tampa (Hyde Park), Florida. Sunspire Health Texas offers a professionals track, and additional centers include ones in South Carolina, Oregon, Massachusetts, and Illinois.
TREATMENT & ASSESSMENT
A typical stay at Sunspire Health Desert Palms is 30 days and follows a structured schedule of psychotherapy and holistic practices. Most days begin with movement, such as a serenity walk or yoga, and go on to incorporate multiple group process sessions, individual counseling, 12-step work, and expressive or recreational therapies. Personalized treatment plans are adjusted to address any co-occurring concerns that come up in the rehab process. Some clients remain for up to 90 days.
Several therapeutic modalities are used, including cognitive behavioral therapy, dialectical behavior therapy, motivational interviewing, mindfulness meditation, and trauma-oriented practices. Group sessions address such topics as grief and loss, sexual orientation, gender identification, social media addiction, the biological nature of addiction, and coping and life skills. Art, music, and equine therapy are also all available, along with nutritional counseling.
After completion of residential treatment, clients can continue treatment in the facility's intensive outpatient program (IOP), which also offers transitional housing support. Aftercare provisions take the form of an active alumni network with regular meetings.
The treatment team at Sunspire Health Desert Palms includes a clinical psychologist, several master's level therapists, and nurses.
ACCOMMODATIONS & AMENITIES
Desert Palms accommodates up to 36 clients in a former hotel with a swimming pool and jacuzzi. Residents share sunny bedrooms with another resident of the gender they identify with. Chef-prepared meals can accommodate any dietary restrictions.
The facility is surrounded by palm trees and mountain views, and group meetings are often held outside. Residents have access to a local gym and hiking trails.
WHAT ALUMNI SAY
To date, Rehabs.com has received feedback for Sunrise Health Desert Palms from 26 former clients. Of these, 22 shared highly favorable reviews, three were critical, and one expressed frustration with financial arrangements and communication, but did not comment on the effectiveness of treatment.
The facility's staff received the most praise, mentioned in about two-thirds of alumni reviews and frequently represented as empathetic and knowledgeable. Two reviewers noted the value of some staff members being in recovery, while one expressed concerns about some staff over-sharing in groups. The staff's level of training and experienced received 4.5 out of five stars on average from 16 alumni polled.
Several reviewers also mentioned the value of the Desert Palms alumni program, the preparations for discharge and aftercare arranged, or their continued contact with facility staff.
Accommodations were commonly cited as an area of strength. Around one-fifth of reviewers favorably mentioned the center's location, view, or activities. Meals and nutrition received a 4.1-star rating on average, the facility's cleanliness and upkeep was rated 4.7 based on 16 responses, and exercise and leisure activities received 4.1 stars. One alum commented that although the facility was very comfortable, the focus was on recovery.
Metrics measuring holistic therapy offerings and counseling options revealed more moderate satisfaction, perhaps reflecting a more tightly focused approach than anticipated. Reviewers agreed strongly that programming was 12-step-focused and adequately equipped to address co-occurring disorders (with a 4.7-star rating).
Criticisms generally were not repeated, and included overly relaxed rules, finances, and not enough to do.
Fourteen alumni contributed to a 4.4-star rating for family participation.
WHAT FRIENDS & FAMILY SAY
All seven loved ones who submitted feedback for Sunspire Health Desert Palms to Rehabs.com shared positive opinions.
In fact, all metrics measured received four or more out of five stars or above on average. The lowest ratings were for family participation and holistic therapy. Loved ones repeatedly praised the center's staff, using such terms as "accommodating" and "focused," although one reviewer noted that programming was not as individualized as expected.
About half of loved ones' reviews concluded in one way or another that the most important thing about Desert Palms was "it worked."
Sunspire Health Desert Palms does not publish its costs, but more than 80% of 11 individuals polled on the affordabtility of treatment granted four or five out of five stars. The facility accepts many private insurance plans and, according to information provided to Rehabs.com by Sunspire Health, financial assistance is available.
Published on January 2018
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