Supporting your desire to live free from self-destructive behavior as you embark on a life long journey of recovery.

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FAQ’s

Most Frequently Asked Questions-

How do I know if SCH is the right place for me?  The answer to this question will hopefully come after an initial consultation with one of our qualified therapists.   We know we are not the right place for all patients, we know its difficult to know where to go and we have excellent relationships with many other outpatient treatment centers throughout the country.  We also know many people may need a higher level of care.  Our goal is to help you find the best possible fit, and if that is not SCH, that’s ok.  Our goal is to help you, and we will be the first to tell you if we think you could be better served at another facility or with a different level of care.

Can I get better care at a residential facility?  The answer to this question is it depends on what you need and where you are in in your disease.  Our goal is to provide the highest level of care possible in an outpatient setting, which we believe is far less disruptive for our patients and their families than residential treatment and of course far less expensive.  That said, there is a great need for higher levels of care for many patients, and in some cases that is what we may recommend for people that come to us.  Given Dr. Kim’s experience with residential treatment, we have excellent relationships with many throughout the country and we will help you find the right fit for you if a higher level of care is what would be best for you.

What do you mean by “integrated treatment”?  This means we are aware of the connections between not only various behavioral health issues (co-occurring disorders) but also the connections between your addiction or mental health disorder and how it is likely effecting your medical health.  We will assess and address not only the symptoms of your disease but also what is underlying and causing the disease and how has your total health been effected as a result. We will work with your primary care Dr., your dentist and any and all providers who are working with you as we create a coordinated care team around you and your condition as we seek to treat your whole person and not “just” one of your symptoms.  We want to get to the root of what’s driving your self destructive behavior and we want to create a multi disciplinary treatment team that can help you recover and stay healthy (both mentally and physically) indefinitely.

What do you mean by “co-occurring” disorders, and do you treat just depression or just substance use disorder or do I have to have multiple disorders in order to come to SCH?  We know from the data that many patients who present with a “primary” most often have more going on than just the one symptom.  SAMHSA defines co-occurring disorders as: The coexistence of both a mental health and a substance use disorder is referred to as co-occurring disorders.  When we say we treat “co-occurring” disorders, this is our way of saying we recognize that many people struggle with recovery from eating disorders or drug abuse because of inadequate treatment of other mental health conditions.  Trauma, for example, often lies at the root of many of these issues.  Depression, anxiety and PTSD are also common co-existing psychiatric conditions.  At SCH we have the experience and the knowledge to identify when this is happening, and we can treat it accordingly.  That said, one does not have to have a “co-occurring” disorder in order to get treated at SCH.

Do you take insurance?  Currently we are out of network and therefore payment is “self pay”.  However, we are expecting to be in network with several major insurance carriers by the Fall.  If you think SCH might be a good fit but need financial assistance while we are out of network, call us.  We have several options that we have designed to help patients who need the financial help while we are out of network.

Is Dr. Kim still working for Timberline Knolls in addition to founding and running SCH?  Yes, she is doing both and she loves it.  Currently, Dr. Kim remains a valued part of several of Acadia’s residential facilities, including Timberline Knolls. Dr. Kim will always have a special place in her heart for Timberline Knolls, its staff and its wonderful residents.  She also has a solid relationship with Acadia’s management team.

What do you mean by saying you track “outcomes” and want to improve “value”?  These are terms being used today at many large hospital systems such as Mayo and Cleveland Clinic and MD Anderson and with many payers as the healthcare system in the United States shifts from a “fee for service” reimbursement model which is based on volume TO a “value based reimbursement” model which is based on how well a patient does as measured by the outcomes being measured per dollar spent.  In layman’s terms this simply means value is being measured by results, and more and more payment models are moving toward paying a provider for value than for volume.  We believe this movement is one that ultimately results in better care for patients and at a lower cost because it aligns the goals of our patients entire care team with our patients and their payers (insurance companies) while at the same time eliminating waste and redundancy in our current healthcare system.  For now we are set up just like everyone else with a fee for service model.  However, with payers we are continually advocating for a shift from volume to value in what we treat. For our patients and their families, this simply means we are a provider who is willing and interested in being held accountable for our provision of care.

 

 

 

 

The Biggest Losers

On a run after work this week, I shared with my husband how stunned I was to discover that the First Lady is considering an appearance on the show “The Biggest Loser.” Stunned about what? Stunned about the deep lack of knowledge around weight stigma and eating disorders that pervades the American public–lay people, politicians, health care providers, insurance companies–pervasive.

My husband had never heard of the show The Biggest Loser. During my attempt to explain it to him, he became confused–focusing on the term “Loser.”

He thought the show indicated that the heaviest person was the biggest loser. Because in America, anyone that is in any way overweight, but especially those who are obese, and especially if they are female, are implicitly considered losers.

I tried to explain to him that the explicit “winner” of the Loser show is the person who loses the most weight (weight loss=good, thin=good, fat=bad). The winner gets the opportunity to be called “The Biggest Loser.” Regardless of who wins the show, the implicit message is that overweight and obese people are losers.

Now, throw in the twist that if people could exercise like crazy (which is the psychiatric term I use for the trainers on the show) and eat only the “Right” foods, they could become a non-loser. On the show, the contestants no doubt lose weight; they also no doubt engage in a completely unsustainable lifestyle. Diets don’t work. They can cause eating disorders, including Binge Eating Disorder, which is often associated with obesity. Diets do not cure eating disorders or low self-esteem. Diets and exercise do not heal trauma or depression. Bariatric surgery and weight loss don’t cure it either.

Developing body acceptance, a sustainable relationship with food and a pleasurable movement/exercise practice will lead to wholeness and health.

News flash for the biggest losers: Health comes in all shapes and sizes!!!

This world needs a Biggest Winner show. The winner being someone who accepts herself, regardless of her size; someone who respects herself and her truth regardless of what the cultural ideal says; someone who cares about her health as measured by cholesterol levels, blood pressure, glucose tolerance, etc., rather than a number on a scale used to calculate a somewhat arbitrary “measure” of health as determined by the CDC in BMI.

We might want to consider changing our coins to “In Weight We Trust.”

I think our chances of abundant living are best with the original. And I believe that God made each of us with the potential to be healthy and loving of ourselves with a wide range of numbers on the scale. That just doesn’t happen when a giant scale is God.

Recovery and Spirituality

What happens to our relationship with God (Jesus, G-d, Higher Power, Universal Spirit, etc.) when we are caught in the grips of an addiction or mental illness? If you want to know what you believe in, what god you really worship, look at your actions. Everyone has a higher power…it is what they turn to when they are in need, in pain, suffering, bored or lonely.

I can’t insist that I believe in a loving Higher Power, personal to me, and simultaneously self-destruct by drinking, smoking, purging, starving, compulsively overeating, contemplating suicide or any number of other behaviors that a loving Higher Power would not want for me.

On a daily basis in recovery, we get to lead an examined life. I get to look at my day and see the places that I cut God out — places where I connect with fear instead of faith, anger instead of forgiveness, self-neglect instead of paying attention to what my soul needs and feeding it abundantly. And thankfully, God is merciful. We get to make amends, and the ones we make to ourselves with small acts of kindness, many times are the hardest.

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40 Skokie Blvd, Suite 200

Northbrook, IL 60062

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(866) 729-1012

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