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What’s the Difference Between PHP and IOP?

php and iop boulder

There are numerous options for beginning the journey of recovery from addiction, including levels of care ranging from around the clock medical impatient treatment to weekly outpatient therapy. Because of the unique flexibility highly structured outpatient programs such as Partial Hospitalization (PHP) or Intensive Outpatient (IOP) can provide, many people are drawn investigate if these levels of care will work for them. Both PHP and IOP offer the option of completing treatment while living at home, creating greater access for people who would otherwise be unable to attend addiction treatment.

PHP and IOP for Addiction Treatment

If you or someone you know is considering addiction treatment, it’s incredibly likely that you’ll experience one or both of these levels of care. Before we dive into the distinctive differences in these types of treatment, let’s review what makes them similar to one another.

First and foremost, both of these treatments are Level 2 Care Practices and designed for an outpatient setting. This means that people can live at home while they attend treatment, although there is also the option to live in a recovery residence or sober living facility to provide additional structure.

Secondly, both provide access to group therapy, individual therapy, drug and alcohol screening. Moreover, the clinical curriculum designed for each program almost always covers the same topics and therapeutic skills.

Lastly, each program usually provides access to certain amenities so make sure you ask what each program offers when you’re calling different facilities. These amenities typically include peer coaching, case management, access to a gym or other community events.

Intensive Outpatient Programs (IOP)

The most common type of addiction treatment is intensive outpatient, or IOP. IOP is considered to be a step down from PHP because it has less outpatient group therapy. IOP provides 3 hours of group therapy for 3-5 days a week. Some programs have day and night therapy sessions to accompany clients who have school or a day job.

The last important thing to know is IOP is usually covered by insurance and lasts roughly 90-180 days. In any event, make sure you speak with your program’s team to best understand changes from PHP to IOP.

Partial Hospitalization Programs (PHP)

Partial hospitalization programs, also known as PHP or day treatment, is considered the highest form of outpatient treatment. Clinical teams may suggest their client’s step down to this level of care after they’ve successfully completed detox or residential treatment, depending on the needs of the individual. PHP typically lasts for 4-8 weeks and is covered by insurance providers.

Unlike IOP, this program lasts for 5-6 hours per day, 5 days per week. That means that most people who have a job may need time off from work to attend this level of care.

Most PHP’s will provide you with medication management from a medical doctor, access to facility amenities, and all therapeutic services offered. The key distinction between IOP and PHP is the amount of time one attends the program.

If you have any questions about the distinctions between our day treatment and IOP, please contact one of our qualified admissions team professionals today.


Author Flatirons Recovery

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