Phoenix Houses Reaches Out to Texas Teens

Thursday, September 27th, 2012

Friends TogetherCombating drug abuse by increasing the availability of treatment services is one of the most important public health needs of adolescents and their families in Texas. According to the CDC, 39.7% of Dallas high school students reported drinking alcohol, 16.1% reported using marijuana, and 4.3% reported using cocaine in the past month. Additionally, 10.2% of Dallas high school students reported using inhalants, and 2.4% reported using heroin.  (CDCHigh School Youth Risk Behavior Survey forDallas,TX, 2009).

Studies demonstrate that Phoenix House Academy programs significantly reduce substance use and criminal behavior, which translates into reduced future burden of cost as teens avoid the ‘revolving door” of social service systems, hospitalizations and incarcerations. Phoenix Houses of Texas programs were also awarded a three-year Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) first in 2009 and again in 2012.

The Phoenix House Academy residential programs offer a structured regimen designed to meet the specific needs of adolescents identified with a primary substance use disorder and other behavioral problems that prohibit successful socialization and positive identify formation. Teens in treatment are likely to have needs in multiple areas, requiring rehabilitative services in the behavioral domain, social domain, cognitive domain, and in general life skills. The Academy program is oriented toward each adolescent’s needs, assessed through an Individual Treatment Plan. The Phoenix House Academy Model entails 35 hours of therapy per week of individual and gender-specific group counseling, process and peer support groups, 12 step programming and educational sessions in addition to: mental health services, medical and dental care, on-site DISD accredited schooling, family education and therapy, health education, life skills training and fitness activities.

All activities at the Phoenix House Academies are designed to help our clients, during the program and afterwards, to: increase motivation to establish a drug- and crime-free lifestyle; make progress in fulfilling educational requirements by catching up in grade-level delays or obtaining a high school diploma/GED; begin the process of successful community reintegration by developing life skills, healthy family and social relationships and relapse prevention skills; and learn to identify and obtain necessary services and support within the community. 2011 – 2012 adolescent residential treatment outcomes from the Hill A. Feinberg Academy, as reported in the 60 – 90 client follow up after completing treatment, are as follows: 86% of clients were enrolled in school, 61% were abstinent from alcohol and other drugs and 68% were involved in aftercare services such as 12-step or outpatient programs.

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