Opioid Crisis and Evaluating Scams

The opioid crisis has spawned a plethora of unethical treatment programs. Scams for people when they are most vulnerable. An informative article in the Huffington Post suggested some critical areas to consider when choosing a legitimate treatment program.

Many of the same guidelines can also be applied to protect consumers of personal and professional growth programs, aka, self-help.  Some of the questions one should ask:

  • Who is running the program?  What are the credentials, licenses, training, and experience of the leader and staff?  We have seen that too often a leader of a self-help event has NO professional credentials or can easily mislead their participants about their training or experience.
  • The staff “helpers” are often volunteers who are there to experience the seminar, workshop or retreat for free.  They are not paid, nor do they necessarily have any professional experience or real training, other than “buying into” the leader’s process.
  • Are evidenced based practices being used?  Is the program or information being taught backed by any research to prove its effectiveness?  The teacher may be a very persuasive, talented presenter, but is the content all personal beliefs, theories, and opinions?
  • Has there been any performance monitoring of the program being taught or is the “value” of the education based solely on individual testimonials?  Is there any follow-up to demonstrate sustained growth or change?
  • Are individuals and their needs treated uniquely or is the program sold as a “one size fits all” solution to all of life’s challenges?
  • Are individuals encouraged to deepen healthy connections with others, with family and friends? Or are those who might not be “like minded” excoriated and isolated from those outside the program?

Check out the link below for the article to evaluate ethical and safe addiction treatment programs:



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