Frequently Asked Questions


1. How is your program different from other treatment facilities that serve Deaf and Hard of Hearing clients?

We are a treatment program that serves only Deaf and Hard of Hearing persons. Clients will have group therapy and 1:1 couseling sessions in their native signed language. Patients are in a setting with their peers sharing similar life experiences, language and most importantly, culture. All staff, Deaf and Hearing, in the DHOH program are fluent in American Sign Language and sensitive to Deaf culture. The program is located at the University of Minnesota Medical Center- Fairview, a hospital complex allowing for access to doctors, nurses, and psychiatrists when clinically necessary.

2. What treatment philosophy do you follow?

The program is based on the Minnesota Model, a 12 Step philosophy but incorporates other models and approaches to meet the needs of the client. Clients attend interpreted Twelve Step meetings as well as meetings in American Sign Language. Generally clients complete individualized projects and Step 1 through 3 while in treatment. While treatment programs traditionally focus on lengthy reading and writing assignments, our program uses unique approaches including the use of drawing, role play, DVDs in ASL , and other strategies which minimize barriers of language.

3. When treatment is completed, what’s next?
Aftercare referrals are recommended which typically include sober housing, Phase II treatment, the ongoing support of a sponsor, and AA or other Twelve Step meetings.

4. Does the program incorporate modified materials into the treatment of the patients?

The Minnesota Chemical Dependency Program for Deaf and Hard of Hearing has produced various manuals, videotapes, DVDs, work books and guides to be used with the Deaf and Hard of Hearing. The videos/DVDs are signed, voiced and open captioned. Step work and various projects are often modified to meet the individual learning capacity of the client.  The program provides hands-on workshops in ASL to address the need to develop new coping skills.

5. What modes of communication are used with clients?

The majority of our clients use signed language as their preferred mode of communication, most commonly, American Sign Language.

Staff interpreters are available to facilitate communication with the hearing program when necessary.

Assistive listening devices are also available for client use.  Hard-of-Hearing individuals without sign language are assessed for appropriate placement.

6. What is the average length of stay?

Typically, the average length of stay in the Lodging Plus Program is 28 days.

Day Outpatient programs can expect 20 days of programming, Monday through Friday. 

Local graduates of the program can continue in Phase II, a weekly group for up to 12 weeks.

7. Do you accept clients from outside of Minnesota?

Yes. Clients from 46 states and 5 provinces have been treated at our program.

8. What funding sources do you accept?

Various funding sources are accepted. We can accept private insurance, consolidated funds, Medicare, OHIP, VR funds, and self pay. Staff members are available to discuss funding concerns and to assist in identifying funding sources.

Unfortunately the program cannot openly accept Medicaid. Under certain circumstances, with a single case agreement, the client’s state may agree to pay for treatment. The client and family are encouraged to contact Medicaid directly to discuss funding.

9. Is there any opportunity for family members to be involved with the treatment process?

We encourage any interested family member or friend to be involved in our family week program. Clients and family members will attend lectures, therapy groups, and counselling sessions during the week. Concerned persons have the opportunity to learn about addiction and ways to be supportive to recovering family members.