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Partial Hospitalization Program for Addiction: Is This the Right Option for Me?

an adult woman sits on a couch while her therapist sits in a chair across from her talking about a partial hospitalization program for addiction

When you’re looking for intensive substance use treatment, deciding whether a residential or outpatient program will be a better fit for your needs can be tricky. A partial hospitalization program, or PHP, provides extra support by offering elements of both types of programs. Often used as a “step up” from intensive outpatient programs and a “step down” from inpatient programs, PHPs combine the structure of residential care with the flexibility of outpatient care.

To learn more about PHPs, call A Better State at 781.412.1488, and we can help you find an outpatient PHP for addiction that meets your needs.

What Is a Partial Hospitalization Program for Substance Abuse?

Despite the word “hospitalization” in the name, a PHP doesn’t require overnight stays in a hospital. PHPs are outpatient programs, which means clients live at home while attending treatment during the day or evening.

The schedule doesn’t involve the 24/7 support and supervision clients may receive at a residential program. However, programming in a PHP may be time-intensive, requiring attendance five days a week for several hours at a time. Structured therapy programs, for instance, are part of almost all PHPs for substance abuse. These programs require a regular commitment.

Since clients spend plenty of time on-site, they can easily receive medical care for severe or recurring symptoms that affect physical and mental health. Each treatment site is staffed by therapists, doctors, and other medical professionals. One benefit of PHPs is that clients can access this high level of care while also having the freedom to live at home and fulfill other responsibilities.

How a Partial Hospitalization Program for Addiction Helps Recovery

Clients often pursue PHPs for addiction when they are transitioning out of a more acute form of treatment, usually residential treatment. Partial hospitalization programs for addiction help with the transition back into everyday life in recovery. Their programming builds on the skills clients learn in inpatient programs so that clients can continue their progress. Having this kind of structure can be extremely helpful in early recovery, which is a challenging time.

Another role of PHPs is to provide a higher level of care than someone has been receiving. For instance, a client in another outpatient program may find they need more support, structure, and time to work on addiction-related issues. Or their addiction may still be too severe for them to progress in a less restrictive outpatient program. PHPs help such clients avoid relapse and inpatient hospitalization by providing support that meets them where they are.

Regardless of the reason someone enrolls in a PHP, the program can have many benefits, such as:

Freedom and Flexibility

The work of recovery often takes a long time. Not all clients are able to step away from other responsibilities during the entire time they are enrolled in a substance abuse program. PHPs’ outpatient setup offers the flexibility for someone to work, attend school, or live with their family while still prioritizing their recovery.


Having a routine and schedule is an important aspect of avoiding relapse, especially when someone’s recovery is just beginning. In a PHP, clients attend rigorous sessions which keep them focused throughout the day. This level of structure can help clients avoid dwelling on withdrawal symptoms or cravings.

Socialization and Support

Loneliness is a hallmark of addiction. The community in a PHP combats loneliness since clients are experiencing similar struggles and can often relate to one another. Seeing the same people regularly helps clients form relationships, accountability, and even friendships.

Partial hospitalization programs for substance abuse may also be less expensive than inpatient programs, whether you’re paying out of pocket or through an insurance plan. This benefit allows you to save money without compromising on care.

Should I Consider a PHP for Addiction?

If you’re concerned about your substance use or the substance use of someone you care about, and most or all of the following statements apply to you, a partial hospitalization program for addiction may be a good choice.

  • You’ve been diagnosed with a substance use disorder
  • You may have attended treatment before, but you’ve since relapsed or decided you need more support
  • You have responsibilities outside of treatment, but you’re still able to make a time commitment to daily sessions
  • Your housing situation is stable, and you have some support from your family, friends, or community
  • You require regular care for physical and mental health needs, but you don’t need 24/7 care or monitoring
  • You’ve been diagnosed with a mental health condition in addition to a substance use disorder

Your doctor or treatment team may also recommend a PHP after you’ve completed medical detox or inpatient care for addiction.

Services Partial Hospitalization Programs Offer

Many PHPs offer medication management as part of their programming. Doctors and nurses will monitor clients’ responses to any medications they take and adjust doses and medication plans as needed. One benefit of PHPs for addiction is that clients can access medical, psychiatric, and other services in the same location on a regular basis.

Therapy and counseling are cornerstones of partial hospitalization programs for substance abuse. Clients may participate in one or more types of therapy during their time in the program. For instance, a PHP may offer:

  • Individual therapy, where clients build a relationship with a counselor and discuss their individual goals
  • Group therapies, which offer opportunities for communal support
  • Trauma-informed therapy for clients who have survived trauma
  • Family therapy for clients whose families are involved in their treatment
  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy and dialectical behavior therapy are two evidence-based techniques that help clients manage their emotions and learn healthy coping skills
  • Holistic forms of therapy, such as yoga and art therapy

As clients progress through counseling, they’ll develop more coping mechanisms they can use to deal with life’s stressors without resorting to substance use.

Contact A Better State to Learn More About Our Partial Hospitalization Program for Substance Abuse in Hudson, NH

The partial hospitalization program is the highest level of care we offer at A Better State. Located conveniently close to the Boston metro area and other states in New England, our facility focuses on outpatient treatment to support clients in their ongoing recovery.

We recognize each client at a PHP will have different needs, and we develop individualized treatment plans. Our PHP offers specialized treatment for drug and alcohol addictions, including trauma-informed care for clients working to overcome past traumas. Mental health care is available for clients with substance use disorders and mental health needs. And for clients who need a sober living situation, our trusted network of partners can help you find a safe, stable space.

If you think our PHP is the right choice for you or someone you love, or if you just want to learn more, contact us at 781.412.1488.