About the  IOP Program

Information about Intensive Outpatient Program

Please use this free resource to better understand our Intensive Outpatient Program. If you have additional questions you would like addressed, please contact us using the easy Contact Us form. To schedule an appointment or arrange for an individual assessment, please call us at 732-431-5300.

Q: What is an Intensive Outpatient Program?

Intensive Outpatient Treatment (also known as IOP for "Intensive Outpatient Program") is a primary treatment program recommended in some circumstances by a clinical and medical assessment. IOP may be recommended for those who do not need medically-supervised detox. IOP can also enable people in recovery to continue their recovery therapies following successful detox, on a part-time yet intensive schedule, designed to accommodate work and family life.

Start rebuilding your personal life and mending your important family ties right away, when you live at home and participate in intensive outpatient treatment. With the Intensive Outpatient Treatment program you are able to establish a foundation for long term recovery support in your local community right from the start of your treatment, instead of waiting until you return from living away in a rehab center.

Q: What sort of therapies and activities are involved when participating in the intensive outpatient program?

In the Intensive Outpatient Program, you receive services primarily through group therapy, but are also assigned an individual therapist you will meet with on a weekly basis while in treatment. Groups are small and generally do not exceed 10 people, allowing for a safe environment.

Many different areas and topics are covered in the IOP. Everyone is introduced to the following areas while in the IOP at The Counseling Center at Freehold:

  • Post-Acute Withdrawal Syndrome Or PAWS
  • Relapse Prevention Skills
  • How to Manage Urges and Cravings
  • Understanding the Brain Chemistry of Addiction
  • Progression of the Disease of Addiction
  • Introduction To the Twelve Steps
  • Spirituality
  • Stages of Change
  • Focus On Co-Occurring Disorders and the Effects On Addiction and Recovery
  • the Family Education Program

Depending on your needs, you may be referred to additional comprehensive mental health treatment, or training in how to increase healthy life skills, or employment counseling.

Q: What is the “declining intensity program”?

When you first start our IOP you will have daily “work” with us so we can help you through the shakiest times of your recovery. As you become stronger and don’t need such intense professional support, you will have shorter sessions, less often.

This is sometimes called a “step down” system since you are effectively “stepping away” from our support as you become more independent. Of course our professional staff remains available and ready to assist you at any time in your treatment.

Q: Does intensive outpatient program include detox?

Your important initial clinical assessment will determine your suitability for the IOP treatment program. In some situations, detox may be required. If medically-supervised detox is required, you will learn the specifics of that requirement for your custom treatment plan, and you will be referred to available professional detox services that are a fit for your situation, prior to starting the IOP program. You will also receive important, helpful counseling about your needs and treatment options as part of your assessment.

Q: What is the difference between inpatient treatment and outpatient treatment?

At an inpatient treatment facility, you live in a residence area, usually a shared dorm room, under the rules and governance of the operators of the center. Each treatment center is unique with its own set of requirements, but you generally give up control of your day to day life while in treatment. Travel is sometimes required for inpatient treatment, and sometimes travel is desired. For example, some people choose to go to Florida for inpatient rehab, and live in a treatment facility for the duration of their rehab. For the typical rehab experience lasting 30 days, this can mean a significant time away from work, family, and personal obligations. 

With an outpatient program like the IOP offered by The Counseling Center at Freehold, you continue to live at your own home. You remain in control of your own life. You can still go to work or get a job, and begin rebuilding your personal life, with the help and support you receive from the program. You are responsible for participating in the treatment programs at the local Counseling Center, according to your scheduled treatment plan.

In the Intensive Outpatient Program, you continue your life with support from the local clinical, emotional and peer support systems provided by the IOP.

Q: Who is eligible for the intensive outpatient program?

The Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) is designed for people who are struggling with problems associated with addictions, substance use and abuse, or the co-occurring disorders associated with substance use.

Elgibility for the IOP is determined by a mandatory clinical/medical assessment, which is conducted at the center as part of the admissions process. The intensive outpatient treatment program is customized for each person, guided by the initial assessment and follow up.

If you would like to consider Intensive Outpatient Treatment for yourself or someone you know, call us at 732-431-5300 to schedule an appointment, or fill out the contact form at the top right of this page so we can contact you with important information about the IOP.

Q: Am I required to participate in 12 Step Meetings?

The Counseling Center at Freehold is non-denominational. We are not a religious organization. We do not preach any specific set philosophical teachings, although we believe your religion and spirtuality can be important components of your recovery. We believe in hope, hard work, community support, and the potential of the human spirit to overcome the problems stemming from substance use.

The 12 Step approach to counseling is very effective, and forms the basis of peer support that has proven to be essential for successful recovery in many cases. Most of our individualized client treatment plans include participation in 12-step meetings.

Q: Is The Counseling Center at Freehold a religious center? Is treatment faith-based?

No, The Counseling Center at Freehold is not a religious center. Our treatment is based on proven scientific methods and practices which do encompass spirituality, but do not have a religious base.

We tailor the intensive outpatient treatment to the individual needs of our community, which includes Christians, Catholics, Protestants, Atheists, Agnostics, Jews, and individuals from numerous backgrounds and perspectives. Our staff is similarly diverse, with a common focus on successful treatment and supported recovery.

Q: How long is the intensive outpatient program at the Freehold, NJ treatment center?

Our IOP usually runs for a period of 5 (five) weeks but every patient is different. Every patient’s treatment program is designed just for them, so may run more or less than 5 weeks if needed.

Q: Are family members and close friends allowed to come along to intensive outpatient sessions?

Research has shown the individuals whose families are involved in treatment have a much better prognosis and a higher success rate. Counseling Center at Freehold will make a concerted effort to include family members in treatment whenever possible.  The goal of the family education program is to provide family members with information and support that will assist our clients in their recovery.


A family education group will be held every Wednesday from 6:30 pm to 10:00 pm.  The purpose of this program is to provide family members with education, information and support to aide their family member in their recovery process.  The family program will have three parts: Didactic/Education Lecture, Process Group (family members only) and Question and Answer Session.  

Q: Is an assessment required before admission to the intensive outpatient program?

Yes, an assessment is required for admission to the Intensive Outpatient Program. An IOP treatment is tailored to the individual by a Master’s level professional clinician who uses information gained in the introductory interview and assessment.

Q: Is there a fee for assessment? Is there a free clinical assessment?

Your personal history, status, and condition will determine how detailed an assessment you will require in order for us to do an appropriate evaluation. When you make your appointment for your first interview and assessment, you will be advised if there will be any fees for the parts of your assessment.

Q: What information is gathered in an assessment?

The treatment plan for you will be determined through a clinical and medical assessment that may include interviews, questionnaires, medical histories, psycho-social evaluations, urine and/or breath analysis, and more. The more detailed our knowledge is of your total state of being, the better your treatment plan will be.