Continuing care is based on the belief that to maintain abstinence after intensive treatment, patients need continuing contact with other recovery services. Experience has shown that simply stopping chemical use is not enough. Only the First Step of the Twelve Steps is about chemical use. The rest of the Steps are about changing your life and building a spiritual nature. You will be returning home to a life where chemical use may have been a "normal" event. You may be faced with many of the problems you had when you left for treatment — legal, financial, emotional, family, relationships, or employment. Your continuing care plan will help you with this adjustment. Below are just some of the continuing care options available to you and your loved one. Halfway House In a halfway house setting, individuals gain vital social and recovery skills. Within a short transition time, residents obtain a job, apply for school, or volunteer their time during the day. During the evening, residents attend group therapy, lectures, and Twelve Step meetings. Psychological services may be available for those in need of individual therapy and psychiatry. Coaching and Accountability Programs Phone-based coaching services are available to the newly recovering addict and their families. The Connection program also provides online tools, documented sobriety time, random drug screening and contact with primary and secondary collateral contacts. Coaching programs are designed for people who need additional support and accountability in their early recovery. Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP) An intensive outpatient program (IOP) is 1 to 4 days a week depending on individual treatment needs. Length of time in treatment is also individualized. Patients may start out at 4 days a week and gradually reduce the frequency of sessions until they're truly established in their recovery. Patients must have a safe place to live that is supportive of sobriety and that offers the opportunity to fully experience treatment and to incorporate it into their daily lives, whether working, volunteering, going to school, or participating in extracurricular activities or social and family functions. Individuals work one-on-one with an addiction counselor. Weekly attendance at Twelve Step meetings is required, along with sponsorship. Continuing Care Groups Continuing care groups may also be recommended to help enforce early learnings and help support recovery. Participants are encouraged to participate in a Twelve Step recovery program such as AA or Narcotics Anonymous (NA) and to get a sponsor. Structured Recovery Housing For some, they may not need more treatment but they do need time to practice recovery skills learned in treatment. A structured recovery house, sometimes called a sober house, may be recommended. Many offer support services that help clients transition from a clinically-managed recovery to a self-managed recovery. Often that means support in managing time, medication and money and extra built in accountability. Through demonstrated skills in doing these things, clients can start doing more of on their own and earn more privileges. Twelve Step Meetings Studies show that patients undergoing addiction treatment benefit from regular participation in Twelve Step-based self-help groups after discharge. Patients are encouraged to go to weekly Twelve Step meetings and find a sponsor to help support their recovery.