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Ariz. center relocation shuns the institutional

October 8, 2014
by Gary A. Enos, Editor
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Environments for Recovery

A relocation of a mere dozen miles has made a significant difference for The River Source, a coed residential treatment facility situated between Phoenix and Tucson, Ariz. Administrators last summer closed a leased property in Casa Grande that had a hospital-like layout and moved patients to a lodge-type setting in Arizona City.

Operators of The River Source had wanted an owned space with more updated design features for some time, and were fortunate to land upon a facility that had been built for high-end assisted living in 2008 but had never opened. “This property gives us a wow factor,” says Liz Martin, vice president of operations.

If first impressions matter, then the organization has made a difference at its new site, as visitors proceed through wrought iron double doors to a grand entrance with high ceilings, impressive lighting and an inviting fireplace. “It's like you're driving up to a hotel,” Martin says. The new location, known as The River Source Mesquite Grove, officially opened July 4.

The area surrounding the site, with its serene mountain views, offers a fitting backdrop for what The River Source refers to as its 12-Step holistic treatment approach. The organization has been in operation since 2003, and also has a treatment site in Mesa.

Where the former facility, located adjacent to a hospital, had long patient corridors leading to a nurse's station, the new residential setting offers a more apartment-like feel. Resident bedrooms are equipped with memory foam mattresses, upgraded furniture, a private bathroom and a walk-in closet.

The genders are separated by wing and also congregate in separate television rooms. Martin says men and women do interact in group treatment sessions and at meal times; meals are served from a chef's kitchen and grand dining hall that includes tables overlooking a courtyard. “We don't want them to be too isolated; that will draw them toward each other more,” Martin says of the sexes.

The new site also houses a naturopathic clinic, outdoor yoga space, and indoor yoga and meditation area. Residents have daily yoga and also go off-site daily to visit a gym with which The River Source has an arrangement.

Holistic therapy services include vitamin IV therapy, acupuncture, massage and an infrared sauna. The River Source's statement of philosophy reads, “Our sauna detox helps to get the 'bad stuff' out of the body and the nutritional IV therapy puts the 'good stuff' back into the body. This comprehensive blend of sauna detox and nutritional IV therapy is a winning combination that makes sense and works.”

Administrators see nutrient therapies as facilitating an earlier engagement in treatment for patients. They also are looking into using their site to develop more organic food options.

Average lengths of stay are now in the 30-day range. The River Source has both in-network and out-of-network insurance arrangements, and a 30-day stay costs just under $10,000. The facility has been facing the same insurance pressures on lengths of stay that most providers of residential addiction treatment have been encountering across the country.

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