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Caron: Expansion into Texas couldn't be better timed

September 3, 2009
by Gary A. Enos, Editor
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The nationally recognized treatment organization sees Dallas as an underserved market

While many addiction treatment organizations struggle under sluggish private and public funding streams, some of the more prominent players in the treatment field are still managing to expand operations. Caron Treatment Centers this week announced it will open a 40-bed residential facility for primary adult treatment next summer in Dallas, entering a market it considers underserved.

The Pennsylvania-based Caron’s chief financial and administrative officer considers the timing of the organization’s expansion into Texas ideal, although he attributes that more to luck than to planning acumen. “We’re starting at the best time of the economic cycle,” says Caron’s Andrew Rothermel. “Unemployment remains high, and this will help us in terms of staffing the facility.”

Much of Caron’s Dallas facility, expected to open in July 2010, will reflect the organization’s overall approach at its other treatment locations. The payer mix will continue to feature mainly private pay along with need-based scholarships and some assistance to patients in billing insurance. The minimum length of stay in treatment will be four weeks.

“When we debated this internally, we decided that the program needs to be delivered at the same level and intensity of care as our other programs,” Rothermel says. “We think we’re going to bring to Texas a clinical model that’s desired and well-established.”

Rothermel says the facility will be limited to adult treatment at first, but that referral sources ultimately will determine the composition of services. Through a leasing arrangement from a prominent Dallas business leader, Caron has secured a 45-acre site that could easily accommodate expansion beyond the initial plans for 40 beds. “Could it be a 100- or 140-bed facility? Without a doubt,” Rothermel says.

Other planned features for the Dallas facility include a number of wellness-related amenities, including a fitness center.

Rothermel says Caron also has designs on expansion into other new markets, terming those to be part of a “fill-in strategy” for the organization.

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