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Outpatient Detox / Ambulatory Detox

Patients who are assessed as physically dependent are further screened by our physicians for Outpatient Detox. Our physician’s evaluation will include a comprehensive medical history, physical examination, and laboratory studies. Patients with more severe or complicated withdrawal symptoms are referred to an inpatient, hospital-grade detox. In most cases, an internist on our staff can manage these client detoxes. Approximately 75% of dependent patients will be eligible for outpatient treatment with medication-assisted detoxification at Northland.

About Ambulatory Detox

If eligible and approved by our physician, the Ambulatory Detoxification Program typically lasts 3-5 days for alcohol and requires attendance at Northland for 5-6 hours daily under the care of a nurse and the supervision of a physician. During medical detoxification, patients will participate in individual and group education and counseling sessions as they are capable. They will be provided with medication to use overnight until they return the following day until discharge from the program. All patients must have good social support, a safe living environment, and reliable transportation.

Ambulatory detox for other drugs (sedative-hypnotics and opiates) typically lasts longer, depending on the substance of abuse. Medical Detoxification is usually covered by insurance, and outpatient treatment has been shown to be safe and effective for selected patients, and far more cost-effective than in-patient care. In addition, while attending outpatient detox, a patient does not have to explain absences from home to those who need not know about the patient’s addiction.

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