What’s the Difference Between IOP and PHP for Substance Abuse Treatment

Before going through rehab or substance abuse treatment, we don’t know much about it. We know that it’s the path to us getting better and that we’re going. We begin to hear all sorts of jargon about residential, inpatient, PHP, IOP, OP, detox, and we have no idea what they are, or what they mean for us in substance abuse treatment. What is an IOP program, what is a PHP program and what’s the difference between the two?

What is a PHP Program?

A PHP program is also known as a partial hospitalization program. A PHP program is when you attend group during the day at a facility and live at the treatment’s housing or housing affiliated with the PHP program. PHP is a hybrid between an inpatient level of care and an IOP program. There are still many restrictions while you are in the PHP level of care.

While in a PHP program you usually have to attend 6 hours of group therapy a day. You will also participate in individual therapy sessions while in a PHP level of care weekly. Group therapy gives you the opportunity to acclimate being with others again, and to open up. Groups and individual therapy sessions are where the healing process begins. Unlike an inpatient or detox program, in a PHP program, you attend outside 12 step fellowship meetings with the facility.

12 step meetings are a vital part of the recovery process of many of those suffering from substance use disorders. There is more accountability in a PHP program, and you are more closely monitored. Having a transitional step from a detox or inpatient program to an intensive outpatient program is beneficial to those in early recovery. It slowly immerses you back into a regular pattern, and you start to focus on the life skills that you need to perfect to continue being successful in your recovery.

While there are more freedoms when you transition from a PHP program to an IOP program, they are both stricter than just a halfway house or sober living where there isn’t a treatment aspect. Stepping down through treatment gives you an extended amount of time in substance abuse treatment where it is easier to abstain from drinks and drugs and further your recovery in a 12 step fellowship.

What is an IOP Program?

An IOP program is an intensive outpatient program. IOP is a level of care in substance abuse treatment. While in an IOP program you will still have group therapy sessions, and individual sessions with your therapist. Most IOP programs are 3 days a week (at night) and are about 3 hours a night. Going to an IOP program gives you the chance to keep acclimating to life outside of treatment while doing things like getting a job, making a schedule for yourself and attending 12 step meetings on the nights you’re not attending groups at your IOP program. Some IOP programs have affiliated sober living, where you go to their IOP program and live in the housing affiliated with the IOP program you’re attending. An IOP program with affiliated sober living allows for you to have more accountability and a safe place to live that has more structure than a halfway house.

An IOP program is one of the final levels between substance abuse treatment and being done with treatment. The longer you stay in treatment, the better your chances of achieving long-term sobriety are. When you’re in treatment for an extended amount of time like an IOP program, it helps you acclimate from a PHP program where you are more taken care of, to the world outside of treatment. Staying in an IOP program also gives you the chance to acclimate to a 12 step recovery program and go through some of the more intense step work while you’re in a safer environment.

While attending an IOP program it also gives you the chance to stay in individual therapy. Individual therapy is different than group therapy although, both are incredibly beneficial. Having continuous one-on-one therapy can give you the chance to get comfortable with opening up to another person and learning how to trust again. There are countless benefits to staying in treatment past the physical withdrawal and a typical 28-day program.

If you or a loved one are interested in attending a PHP program, or IOP program, contact us today at 855-448-3588. You deserve long-term sobriety; we can help you get there.