Thalasar Ventures

Drug Rehabilitation Center

One of the first projects I did when I moved to New Mexico was the Centerforaddiction.org which was a directory of drug rehab & treatment facilities in the United States. I built that site because a former girlfriend struggled with cocaine addiction. In building that site I have taken a look at hundreds of drug treatment facilities’ programs and websites.


The Narconon Stone Hawk program is one of the most successful in the country, boasting of a 76% success rate. This undoubtedly due to their approach to drug rehab which emphasizes the physical aspects of addiction and the mental aspects of addictions. Many drug treatment programs don’t fully treat the underlying physical component addiction.
The cornerstone of mental well being is physical well being. The Narconon Stone Hawk program treats both the physical and the mental components of addiction. For the physical component of addiction they detoxify the body using a rigorous detoxification. The detoxification program includes saunas designed to help eliminate the residual toxins built up into the fatty tissues of the body. They then combine that with the power of proper diet, exercise, and supplementation to prepare the body and the mind for developing a set of life skills needed to free one’s self from drug addiction.
Freeing the body from it’s physical dependency is just the first step in preparing a student to free himself from drug addiction. Breaking the cycle of addiction requires developing the coping skills needed to deal with life’s difficulties and problems. Addicts are using alcohol and drugs as a coping mechanism. Their drug rehab program teaches and helps develop their life skills so that addicts can overcome the mental urge to use drugs.
The Narconon Stone Hawk program also offers an after care program that is uniquely designed for each student. This part of the program is undoubtedly one of the essential elements in their success as drug rehab program. Let’s face relapses rarely occur in rehab but they occur when students are just beginning to use their life skills to cope. This custom designed follow up and treatment helps support the student as they remain drug free.
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8 Responses to “Drug Rehabilitation Center”

  1. Dave says:

    I take strong exception to this post.

    The Narcanon Stone Hawk center is a Church of Scientology organization, part of a group of affiliated centers that have been the subject of wide-ranging criticism from nearly every corner of the drug treatment and addiction community. This criticism includes allegations of physical abuse and intimidation, financial impropriety, drug use at the facilities, and “detoxification” regimens that could be medically harmful.

    Perhaps most egregious are the claimed success rates that are quoted, which have come under serious scrutiny and are widely believed to simply be a lie.

    As an addict in recovery with eight years clean I have a true understanding of how deadly this disease can be, and it offends me that a program which, in my opinion, is a dangerous fraud should be given any forum space, “sponsored” or otherwise.

    – Dave

  2. Dave I was completely aware that “Narcanon Stone Hawk center is a Church of Scientology organization.”
    Most of the criticism focused on Narcanon is critizism of Scientology disguised. I have known a number of Scientologists and quite frankly Scientology has made them better people. The Narcanon methods work and you are free to express your opinion. Just keep it civil.

  3. Dave says:

    Thanks for your response Brian, but the primary source of my concern is not the particular faith of the people running the center. There is similar criticism of fundamentalist Christian organizations trying to use “faith-based healing” to cure addiction as well, and when I see a post on them I identify them and weigh in similarly. It’s important to mention, however, because people should know the root of a center’s treatment philosophy before going in.

    The exception I take is to the methods and the claims that are made. Despite the tone of my previous post, I am open to the idea that the Narcanon methods work, but I could not find any references to reputable, open studies on relapse rates using these methods, just claims from the organization that have not been subjected to outside scrutiny. Again, I am open to being proved wrong, so please publish links if you have them. But whether you’re a Scientologist, a Christian, an atheist, or an addict, the only way to know whether you have a successful medical treatment is by subjecting that treatment to the Scientific Method.
    The reason why this is a serious matter is because just as you have known a number of Scientologists, I have known a number of addicts, and the disease is as deadly as cancer. If you saw various cancer treatment centers advertising a 76% cure rate using methods that appeared to be untested by any rigorous scientific process, then you would feel an urgency about setting the record straight, especially if you or your loved ones had the disease.
    In drug and alcohol treatment even science-based programs have a sadly low success rate, so the odds are stacked against addicts to begin with. Anything that diverts them away from their best chance at recovery, or worse, frustrates their hopes of recovery by being ineffective is, frankly, taking lives. So Brian, I will reserve my judgment on these centers until I’m presented with the necessary scientific evidence that comes from independent studies; but extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof, especially when, if you get it wrong, someone stands a high chance of ending up dead.
    Best,
    – Dave

  4. “Again, I am open to being proved wrong, so please publish links if you have them. But whether you’re a Scientologist, a Christian, an atheist, or an addict, the only way to know whether you have a successful medical treatment is by subjecting that treatment to the Scientific Method.”
    Well the scientific method would require a control group which is a clear violation of scientific ethics in dealing with human beings. I have spent some time reviewing that figure, typically that number represents the rate for graduates of their program. Since roughly 40- 50% (this varies from facility to facility obviously) never complete the program, total success rate of enrolled students is lower. Compared with such programs such as AA, that’s a far better success rate. In fact AA at a 5% success rate is no better than the 5% success with individuals who never get counseling. In other words AA is no more effective than doing nothing.

  5. Dave says:

    There are well-established protocols for placebo-controlled trials in humans, and they have played a central role in ethical medical research for sixty years. They’re used now even in such critical drug areas as treatments for late-stage metastatic cancer. This is specifically because proper use of the scientific method is so critical to understanding whether a particular treatment is genuinely effective or the result of researcher bias. Recently, however, increasingly-refined methods of statistical analysis are also being developed that will allow researchers to rely on fewer and fewer human placebo trials.
    In this case, however, I would simply be satisfied with long-term studies from a reputable third party that track patient outcomes. I respect your sincerity in this, but your personal reviews of the figures fall short of an independent standard.
    I am not trying to compare this program to AA, I am simply trying to get some independent verification of the claims they themselves make. For an organization that has taken on the responsibility of treating a deadly disease, I don’t think that’s too much to ask.

  6. I mention AA and NA as examples of drug addiction treatment programs that have a success rate roughly on par with doing nothing (in other words the leading drug treatment programs in the United States are completely unsuccessful). Most of the studies I read where at stridently anti-narconon sites, yet it was still clear from the raw data that the total success rate (from people entering the program regardless of whether they graduate) was 25%-35%. It was higher among graduates.
    Most of those sites were stridently anti-Scientology sites as well so the reporting was less than objective.
    “For an organization that has taken on the responsibility of treating a deadly disease, I don’t think that’s too much to ask.”
    Yet it seems to be too much ask for AA. Nowhere do you find any discussion of the complete failure of the method and the program. Yet it’s the most popular drug treatment program in the United States.

  7. Dave says:

    I certainly have opinions on AA and NA, but they are not why I’m here. I’m here because you posted an endorsement of a program that has been acquiring clients using statistics that (from my perspective so far) have not been subject to any reputable scrutiny.
    I recognize that there is an anti-Scientology faction out there, and people are welcome to their opinions, but that’s not the basis of my objection. My objection is that the treatment centers may be acquiring clients using success rate statistics that are clinically unsupported. Although I don’t know about your claim of being the most popular treatment program in the United States, anyone can achieve success by simply claiming success rates that aren’t true. If I have $10,000 magic beans that I tell you have an 80% cure rate for Parkinson’s, you are certainly going to ask me how I got that number before you buy them for a loved one. If I say that “there were many studies,” and then move on, you might ask again, and if, ultimately, I can’t produce those studies you might come to the conclusion that I was making the number up, and not trust me with your loved one. I’m not saying that’s the case with these treatment centers, but I am at the “show me the studies” phase.
    I’m not here to compare Narcanon with AA, NA, Betty Ford, or self-treatment; I’ve had similar debates regarding the long term tracking and effacacy of them in other forums. I’m here because you repeated and endorsed the specific claims of a specific program, and I’m asking you to help me compare their claims with their actual performance under a reasonable intellectual and independent standard.

  8. Dave I am not sure what you exactly want from me. I have found a series of studies just by Googling Narcanon methods, Narcanon methods work. You can find the studies at a series of anti Narcanon sites with the raw data showing an 25-35% success rates with one study showing one center with a 6% success rate.
    The problem is that complaints about the methods and studies are 15 years old and the studies themselves are even older. Many of these sites are citing articles written in lay publications such as the LA Times in the 80s. Furthermore Narcanon methods have changed quite a bit in the last twenty years. You claim that you don’t care that Narcanon is associated with the Church of Scientology, yet that was what you immediately pointed out when coming here, to whit, your first post “The Narcanon Stone Hawk center is a Church of Scientology organization . . .” as though mentioning the Church of Scientology would be enough to discredit the organization. I have already put the success rate within the context of graduates of the program.
    I think you have an axe to grind here. What I find amazing is that you don’t do the same venting against AA and NA (which are undisputedly the largest drug treatment programs in the United States) and are completely ineffective. The largest complaint that most people have is that the marketing data is misleading, since it never mentions that over 50% of graduates never complete the program and that success rates are for graduates. But then again I challenge you to get similar data from AA or NA.