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We are experts in helping you balance treatment with daily responsibilities.


Intensive Outpatient Program that helps clients transition into independence while putting recovery skills to use in a safe and supportive environment. 


Clients in Intensive Outpatient Programs (IOP) receive 3 hours of treatment, 5 days per week. Individual treatment sessions include meeting with your dedicated primary counselor and therapist. Every client meets with our medical director on a weekly basis to ensure they are receiving the most appropriate level of care. 

Individual treatment in Intensive Outpatient Programs is complemented with group therapy. Group sessions in our Intensive Outpatient Programs include peer-focused processing groups. These group settings are intimate with an average size of 7 clients.


We also believe it is important to show our clients what it’s like to enjoy life in sobriety. Having fun together strengthens the relationships that will support your recovery long after you complete IOP. Group outings include: 

  • Cultural outings: museums and restaurants 
  • Community service 
  • Stand-up comedians 
  • More! 


Once a client has been in Intensive Outpatient Programs for 45 days, they are eligible for our vocational services program. In this program, we help our clients with everything they need to take the next step toward their professional dreams: 

  • Resume writing 
  • Interview skills practice 
  • Wardrobe consulting 
  • Placement in jobs ideal for those in early sobriety 
  • Community college – assistance with application and class selection 

Family Support

We at Buckeye Recovery Network prioritize family support throughout treatment. From admission to discharge, we keep family members updated on progress and next steps of each client’s program. We understand that many of our clients come to us from out-of-state, and we utilize HIPAA-compliant way of keeping in communication to ensure privacy. 


If you are ready for an Intensive Outpatient Programs that is focused on your long-term success, give us a call. Our expert team will provide a thorough assessment to ensure you get the customized care you need.

If you are simply interested in learning more about Intensive Outpatient Program or our treatment process, please reach out. Your call is always confidential, and there is absolutely no obligation required to speak with us.

Call Us Now: 949.258.7580

Learn more about intensive outpatient programs

Treatment for Addiction

Intensive outpatient treatment can help treat substance abuse disorder (SUD). More than 22.5 million people over the age of 12 needed treatment for a drug or alcohol abuse issue in 2014, amounting to 8.5% of the US population. Only 4.2 million of the people who needed treatment for SUD (18.5%) actually received that treatment, and only 2.6 million of those who looked for treatment did so with a treatment program that focuses on addiction recovery for substance use disorder. 1

Finding the best fit for your treatment in overcoming addiction is a very important part of the recovery process. Often, an Intensive Outpatient Treatment will suit the needs of someone who has family or work responsibilities that won’t let them enter full-time residential treatment.


There are five main levels of care for treating someone who is suffering from a drug or alcohol addiction.2 The levels gradually increase as the intensity of services increase.

Level 0.5: Early Intervention

These services are for persons who are known to be at risk of developing a substance use disorder. Addiction education and the need for making changes in behavior are the focus at this level to help prevent substance use disorder from developing.

Level 1: Outpatient Services

These services take place at a setting a person can easily travel to on a daily or weekly basis. This is done so a person’s daily routine or work schedule is not disturbed. Treatment includes meeting with addiction counselors and mental health professionals. A person is evaluated, treated, and receives follow-up services on an outpatient basis.

Level 2: Intensive Outpatient Services

The number of hours spent in treatment increase at this level. These Intensive Outpatient Programs can be offered to fit into a person’s daily schedule, with meetings scheduled after work or school in the daytime, evenings or on weekends. Also included at this level are Partial Hospitalization Services. Around-the-clock care is not needed, but 20 hours or more per week of services are provided. Intensive outpatient services also take into account medical and psychiatric problems, medications needed, and often includes a 24-hour crisis service.

Level 3: Residential Inpatient Services

Patients at this level of care live in a home-like setting that offers a variety of clinical services provided by trained professionals. There are various levels of clinical intensity within Level 3, depending on the person’s needs.

Level 4: Medically Managed Intensive Inpatient Services

This type of residential treatment offers around-the-clock nursing care and regular medical care for persons who are suffering from more severe forms of addiction.


An Intensive Outpatient Program is for people who need treatment for a substance use disorder but do not need to undergo medical detox or have 24-hour supervision. Instead of living in a residential facility, someone in an Intensive Outpatient Program remains living at home and comes to receive treatment a certain number of hours per week.

Intensive Outpatient Programs Provide Therapy and Education

Treatment can include individual counseling, group therapy, family therapy, and education about mental and substance use disorders.3

An Intensive Outpatient Program provides patients with a higher level of care than regular outpatient services. On the other hand, an Intensive Outpatient Program provides patients with a lower level of services than a residential program.

Time Spent at a Treatment Center

A minimum of 3 days per week and 9 hours of treatment each week are required (at least in the beginning) for an Intensive Outpatient Program After a certain amount of time, the days and hours spent at an Intensive Outpatient Program lessen.

The entire program can take anywhere from a few weeks to several years, with 90 days being the average length of time needed. The actual length of the program depends upon each individual’s needs and whether their goals are achieved.


There are many advantages to choosing an Intensive Outpatient Program for addiction recovery. One of main benefits is that you can continue meeting your responsibilities at home, work or school while you’re getting treatment for a substance use disorder. If your level of addiction can be matched to this level of care, you would not need to live full-time in a residential setting for treatment. Instead, you can continue living at home.


If you’re a student, you can continue with your studies at school. Full- or part-time workers can keep their jobs and still take part in treatment for substance use disorders. Those who care for other family members at home will be able to continue being a caretaker while undergoing treatment.


Another advantage of entering an Intensive Outpatient Program rather than one of the other treatment types is that an Intensive Outpatient Program is much less expensive than inpatient treatment. If your insurance covers treatment for addiction, it’s likely that an Intensive Outpatient Program will be covered more quickly than an inpatient program would.


This type of outpatient program keeps people connected to family, friends, and the world at large. You wouldn’t need to be separated from those you love or from what’s going on in your neighborhood or in the real world. This is important, because once treatment is completed, you will have to re-enter the real world, with all of its challenges and pressures.

Intensive Outpatient Programs have been found to be as effective as inpatient treatment for most people who need help with addiction recovery. 4


If you or a loved one have been advised to enter an Intensive Outpatient Program (Level 2), it’s helpful to know what to expect and why that level of care is suggested.

When you enroll in an Intensive Outpatient Program, you may need to go to meetings two or three days a week. Each day you go, you will be there for about 3-5 hours to take part in services. Your day might include four different group sessions and an individual session. Each meeting will touch on a different part of your care.

Because you have not received a lot of education and therapy at this point, treatment may be intensive in the beginning. Participants will have many different types of therapy sessions every week. When the intensive portion of the treatment is completed, patients can then move on to regular outpatient services where they will meet less often in order to remain in recovery.

Group Therapy

Most Intensive Outpatient Programs focus on a group therapy approach, as this type of therapy has been found to be quite effective in preventing relapse.5 In group therapy sessions, patients practice communication skills and learn to socialize without the use of drugs or alcohol. Group counseling also provides a safe environment that offers support and provides structure.

There are usually many different kinds of groups during anyone’s course of treatment. Each group will have a different focus, such as support, stress management, or skills development. Some specialized groups may be for recreational activities or help with job seeking.

Individual Counseling

This is an important part of treatment, though of somewhat less importance than group therapies. These counseling sessions tend to focus on a person’s current efforts to stop using substances and their immediate issues with the program. Individual counseling sessions typically meet at least once a week for 30-50 minutes.

Educational Programming

These are basically learning sessions given to groups in order to educate them with facts about treatment types, the recovery process, and continuing care.

Monitoring Substance Use

Patients in an Intensive Outpatient Program will be routinely monitored as to whether they are still using drugs or alcohol. Some programs let clients report on their own without the need for actual testing. However, most take urine, breath, saliva, sweat, blood and hair samples. In this way, the staff can decide whether a person’s individual treatment plan is on course or needs tweaking. It is also a way to discourage people from using substances.

24-Hour Crisis Line

Many Intensive Outpatient Programs have trained staff members ready to give their immediate attention to those who need help outside of the program’s working hours. Some examples of how these crisis interventions work are:

Hotline services: Calls from clients are forwarded to a crisis intervention line.

On-call clinician: Some programs have a professional on call, especially programs dealing with clients who have co-occurring mental disorders.

Professional service providers: Some afterhours calls may be forwarded to a detox or inpatient rehab center that is open 24 hours a day.

Traditional 12-Step Programs: Involvement in a 12-step group is often recommended for those in an Intensive Outpatient Program. For those who are uncomfortable with this type of group format, there are alternative groups that offer similar types of support, such as Smart Recovery and secular organizations.

Employment Training: Some patients undergoing recovery may need more education and better skills in order to re-enter the job market or move on to a different career.

Additional Services

Some Intensive Outpatient Programs also offer enhanced services that may include help with:

Adult education


Housing and food

Recreational activities

Creative therapies such as music, dance, crafts, etc.

Licensed child care

Parenting skills training

What if Detox is Needed?

Before entering an Intensive Outpatient Program, you will first go through a clinical assessment to determine if this is the best fit for you. If you need to undergo medically supervised detox, the staff at the Intensive Outpatient Program will refer you to the right detox service for your needs. When detox is complete, you can then begin the outpatient program.


An Intensive Outpatient Program is especially different from Levels 3 and 4 of care for addiction treatment.

Residential inpatient services means that a person is living full-time in a rehab facility to receive various types of therapies. The length of stay can be anywhere from 30 days to 3 months or longer.


Treatment in residential rehab will often begin with detox so that a person’s body can be rid of the toxins that have led to addiction. Detox often comes with some uncomfortable side effects like nausea, vomiting and muscular pain. Medications might be given to lessen these side effects. After detox, therapy can begin. This may include group therapy, individual counseling, cognitive behavioral therapy, education on addiction and relapse prevention, and other add-on therapies.

How is an Intensive Outpatient Program Different from a Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP)?

A partial hospitalization program (PHP) is for those who need to continue working on their addiction issues but don’t need to be doing this work in a 24-hour setting. A PHP is often the right move for a person who must leave residential treatment but still needs to continue treatment.Someone in a partial hospitalization program usually visits a facility for treatment about 6 hours a day, 5 days a week. It is a more time-consuming program than an Intensive Outpatient Program, which may take only 3 hours a day, 3 days a week.

Both Intensive Outpatient Program and PHP services are on a Level 2 of care for addiction treatment. They are both less costly than residential treatment, and both have the same goals for sobriety and relapse prevention.

Difference Between Intensive Outpatient Programs and Regular Outpatient Programs

Both program types work very much the same way, except an intensive outpatient program requires more hours of services and more days per week spent at the facility. This improves the speed of recovery, with a move to a regular outpatient program as important recovery goals are reached. Both programs on an outpatient basis have similar classes, meeting and workshops. These sessions are highly structured and a patient’s presence in each program is required according to their individual needs.

The kinds of sessions and number of hours for attendance are different for each person. If a patient does need to undergo medical detoxification, it must take place at a professional detox service facility before entering an IOP.

Patients Focus Solely on Recovery

Of course, one of the main differences between residential treatment and Intensive Outpatient Program is the fact that with Intensive Outpatient Programs, patients can continue to live in their own homes with their families and continue with their lives while outside of treatment sessions. Being in residential rehab does have the advantage of letting individuals more completely focus on their recovery, with no outside distractions. Medication-assisted detox is also available to help those who need to rid their bodies of toxins.

Intensive outpatient programs keep people involved in their personal lives, hopefully helping them repair any damaged family relationships more quickly.

Treatment for Serious Health Issues

Level 4 is medically managed intensive inpatient care. This level of care is usually for those who have serious health issues such as heart problems or diabetes, in addition to substance use disorder. Medical monitoring takes place at this level of care, which happens in a residential setting. Other issues bringing someone to medically managed inpatient care would include those who:

Have severe withdrawal symptoms

Have a co-occurring mental illness

Cannot stop using substances when left on their own

After completing this type of inpatient program, a person will still need ongoing therapy and possibly medical treatment in order to remain sober.


Myth: There is a Religious Aspect to Treatment

Some people may think that an intensive outpatient program requires them to participate in religious-based, 12-step meetings. Although a 12-step approach is an effective part of counseling, it’s an encouraged but not a required part of most programs that are not faith-based. Rather, it is usually an option as part of a treatment plan.

Myth: Once a Patient Enters an Intensive Outpatient Program, They’ll be Kept in Treatment for as Long as Possible

Every patient’s situation is different, with individualized treatment plans designed with that person’s needs in mind. A typical Intensive Outpatient Program may be shorter or a bit longer than another person’s treatment plan, but no one is ever forced to stay longer than necessary. Plus, time spent in treatment is usually reduced as someone makes progress in their treatment plan, shows a lowered risk of relapse, and relies more on sober community support systems.


It’s important to keep in mind that part of a good intensive outpatient program will include some form of family therapy. If your family fully supports your recovery efforts, treatment lets you use that support network to its full extent. The involvement of family and loved ones is encouraged during the recovery process, even beyond any weekly family sessions that may take place.

Increased Motivation

Family sessions increase motivation to achieve recovery. This is especially true when family members realize that an addiction disorder is connected to problems within the family. 6

Identifying Relapse Triggers from Family Members

Some family patterns can either work for or against recovery efforts. When family members enable substance use or there are often conflicts surrounding the use of drugs or alcohol, patterns of communication emerge. These can be explored and hopefully changed.

Education to Support Recovery

During the early recovery period, family members can be educated as to what they can expect of their loved one who is in treatment. In this way, unrealistic expectations can be dissolved and replaced with realistic goals and support.

The family is also educated about signs of relapse and the causes and effects of substance use disorders. When families show a positive, encouraging attitude toward recovery, it helps strengthen positive change.


If you go to work, have a family to care for, are enrolled in school or otherwise have responsibilities that will not allow you to enter a residential inpatient facility, then an Intensive Outpatient Program is a good option to consider.

If you have a strong support network of people at home, this is important in your recovery efforts. A strong, stable home life is another important piece of the puzzle to deciding whether an Intensive Outpatient Program is right for you. A support network is there to help you when you aren’t participating in treatment sessions.

If you are at a lower risk for relapsing once recovery is completed, then an Intensive Outpatient Program might be a good fit. If you are not using substances any longer because you underwent detox or simply stopped, an Intensive Outpatient Program is a good choice.

If you are comfortable being frank and open with a group of people you don’t know very well, this is a good sign of your compatibility with an intensive outpatient program.


If you think our intensive outpatient program is the right fit for you or someone you love, please reach out today. Our caring staff is eager to help you.

Call Us Now: 949.258.7580

Kelsey Gearhart

Director of Business Development

Kelsey carries multiple years of experience working in the substance abuse and mental health treatment field. Her passion for this field comes from her personally knowing recovery from addiction.

Prior to Buckeye she held titles of Recovery Coach, Operations Director, and Admissions Director. Kelsey was brought on at Buckeye Recovery as the Director of Business Development. She has a passion for ensuring every individual gets the help that they need, and does so by developing relationships with other providers.

Kelsey also oversees our women’s sober living environments – The Chadwick House for Women. She is committed to creating a safe, nurturing, and conducive environment for all women that walk through the doors of Chadwick.