Answering Your FAQs About the Center

Author: IAFF Staff

April 13, 2018

Are you considering treatment at the IAFF Center of Excellence, but are hesitant because you don’t know what to expect?

We want to set your mind at ease and answer some of your questions. Our goal isn’t just to treat IAFF members — we want to pave the way to help you get here, too, and make you as comfortable as possible about the process. Consider the following list of frequently asked questions, and feel free to contact us directly if you have additional concerns.

Outdoor view of coe building and picnic table

What Conditions Do You Treat?

Our Center is equipped to treat substance abuse, addiction, and dependence involving alcohol, illicit and prescription drugs. In the area of mental health, we treat post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, bipolar disorder, complicated grief, obsessive compulsive disorder, social anxiety, and other mental disorders.

What Is a Co-Occurring Disorder?

The coexistence of a mental health disorder and a substance use disorder is referred to as a co-occurring disorder. Examples include PTSD with alcoholism, and depression with drug addiction.

Do My Dues Cover the Cost of Treatment?

Unfortunately, your union dues cannot cover the cost of treatment. If you have additional financial questions, we’re available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Do I Need a Pre-Diagnosis to Be Accepted?

No, you do not need to have a medical or mental health diagnosis before being admitted to the Center. Whether you or someone else has recognized that you have a problem, we’ll be more than happy to accept you, assess your symptoms, and treat you accordingly.

What Do You Mean by “A Center Designed for Fire Fighters”?

Our Center was designed by the IAFF, so many of the features mimic those of a station house, including the kitchen table and wellness center. The goal is to make you comfortable during your stay while creating a therapeutic environment for healing.

How Long Does Treatment Take?

The average length of treatment is between 30 and 45 days. However, because programs are individualized, the timeframe varies for each client, depending on the treatment track (substance use or mental health), the level of detox needed, and the client’s willingness to move through the program.

What Is the Enrollment Process?

  • The initial call: Either the IAFF member or a loved one must first call the Center before admission can begin.
  • Insurance verification: After assessing the need for services, we check insurance coverage so you can know what the financial implications will be in advance.
  • Pre-assessment: The pre-assessment takes 20-45 minutes and is conducted to help you understand the process before arriving at the facility.
  • Admission: To ensure you arrive at our facility safely to begin treatment, we make transportation arrangements to and from the airport.
  • Clinical intake and assessment: Once at the Center, our medical staff conduct a clinical intake and assessment to determine the appropriate treatment track (substance use, mental health or both).
  • Treatment: The treatment plan is based on primary and co-occurring disorders (if any) and involves several levels of care, including detox and outpatient care.

Can I Have Visitors When I’m a Client?

If you’re progressing well through treatment, yes, you can have visitors. This decision is determined by the clinical team. At the Center, we feel strongly about including family members and significant others in the treatment process, so if having visitors is clinically indicated, we support it.

COE main entrance sign with flags flowing on flagpoles

Are Controlled Substances Allowed?

We cannot house or store any controlled substances (opiates, medical marijuana, vaping products, benzodiazepines, etc.) at our facility. However, if necessary, we can provide a short-term taper of certain medications

How Many People Can You Treat at One Time?

Our Center can treat up to 64 IAFF members at any given time.

For any additional questions about the IAFF Center of Excellence, or if you’re ready to enroll, give us a call.

We can help. Call 240-545-5141 or

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