As a physician, what was your biggest takeaway from the experience? Shadowing families and experiencing how the Betty Ford Center educates and integrates family members into the healing process was incredibly instructive. I could literally see the burden being lifted from the shoulders of family members as they learned that addiction is a disease, that it's nothing to be ashamed of, and that other families struggle with the same angst and challenges. How has the experience changed the way you practice medicine? The program gave me a better appreciation for the chronic nature of substance use disorders and the need to manage the condition over the long term. As a result of the program, I decided to learn more about recovery support resources available in my local community. I went to local AA meetings and discovered the different types of Twelve Step meetings available in order to be as helpful as possible when talking with patients and families about recovery resources that could be of benefit. It seems to me that the success or failure of treatment programs is greatly dependent on the support patients surround themselves with after they leave the rehab setting. The Betty Ford Center did an excellent job of preparing both patients and their family members about what to expect after treatment and the types of resources and support available to strengthen the healing process. Was there anything about your experience that was unexpected? Not that it was unexpected, but I was especially impressed with the environment of care at the Betty Ford Center. Everyone from the counselors to the cooks do a great job of helping patients feel comfortable and valued. The beautiful architecture, the spectacular, healthy food, the whole vibe of the place is warm and welcoming. I think the treatment setting itself is an important factor in encouraging patients to engage fully in the process. The goal is to have patients stick with treatment long enough to be as healthy and strong as possible when they leave the care setting and go on to manage their own recovery. Come Learn With Us Our earliest leaders at the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation believed there were too many people suffering with addiction for us to keep our knowledge, tools and experience to ourselves. That's why our doors have always been open to other care providers and helping professionals to come and learn with us through: Immersive, week-long programs such as Professionals in Residence and Summer Institute for Medical Students that combine educational presentations with the opportunity to shadow staff and patients Free webinars presented by our experts and authors Online courses offered by the Hazelden Betty Ford Graduate School of Addiction Studies Free, downloadable Research Updates and white papers from our Butler Center for Research Books, videos and curricula by the field's leading clinicians and authors Continuing education events and workshops Learn more about how you can take advantage of these and other educational opportunities.