An alcohol rehab clinic graduate stands happily in a field with arms outstretchedIn building our lists of proven alcohol rehab clinics that we would consider referring our clients to, we have identified several reliable signs of success. These indicators help us to be able to make sure that the alcohol rehab clinic that we refer our clients to will give them the best chance to make a full recovery. That being said, you can use these signs of success in order to help you make a decision about a rehab on your own.

Success Rate of the Alcohol Rehab Clinic

The first sign of success that we look for is an obvious one, but one that you can’t look at by yourself because it’s a statistic, and any statistic can be changed or altered or made to look any way you want it to, but it is an important statistic and can tell us a few things. That statistic is the program’s success rate. Basically, what we want to know is how many graduates stay clean for a period of one year after they have completed the rehab program. Now, we’d actually like to know how many people stay clean for life, but those statistics are nigh impossible to get. But we’d like to know how many of their students stay clean for a period of one year or longer.

What is a Good Success Rate for an Alcohol Rehabilitation Program?

We look for a success rate of over 50%. Now, that might be surprising to you that it’s that low of a percentage success rate, but the very best drug rehabs in the world manage what’s considered a stellar 75% success rate. The average alcohol rehabilitation facility has less than a 20% success rate, which means that more than 4 out of every 5 people who graduate an alcohol rehab in the United States go back to drinking within one year.

Of course, when our clients are willing to travel anywhere in the United States to receive alcohol rehabilitation, then we refer them to only the best programs. If, however, our clients have to stay in their local area, we will not refer them to a program with a success rate of less than 50%.

Alcohol Rehab Clinic False Claims

One warning sign to look for, though, is if the organization is claiming a success rate in the 90 – 100% range, and we haven’t heard of them (in other words, they’re not a mainstream rehab program) we tend to discount that. We tend to think either they’re serving very few clients and so statistically the numbers are not able to be accurately tabulated, or they’re somehow skewing the statistics, or their methods of gathering the statistics are not correct. Such claims tend to indicate that we are considering an amateur facility or amateur personnel and so we avoid those centers.

We never recommend an alcohol or drug rehab that won't release its own success rate or doesn't track its success rate

What if the Alcohol Rehab Won’t Tell You Their Success Rate?

We also never recommend for our clients an alcohol rehab center that won’t publish or won’t tell us their success rate. If a rehab is doing this, ittells us one of two things. Either one, they don’t want us to know their success rate, because it’s low. Or two, they don’t follow up with their clients. If they don’t follow up with their clients, it’s a sure way to increase the chances of them relapsing, and that indicates that they aren’t really a professional organization that’s going to give our clients the best chance of results.

Graduates – Another Sign of an Alcohol Rehab That Works

Another sign of success is the program’s graduates, themselves. Does the organization publish testimonials or videos of real people who have been helped by the center? We actually like to interview a few of the center’s graduates before we add the rehab to our potential recommendation list. The reason for this is that you can get the facts and learn a lot more about a rehab center from its clients than you can from its personnel. You can learn the ins and outs of the center. Successful, happy graduates who have a lot of good to say about the program but are also realistic in their comments about it is a very good sign. We expect, of course, that a graduate of a rehab would have some sort of slight negative feedback along with his positive feedback. Otherwise we suspect they’re being paid as some sort of walking, talking advertisement of the program, and so their feedback isn’t really useful to us. But you can tell. It’s actually quite obvious when you’re speaking with someone, you can see whether or not they’re being truthful and realistic.

Alcohol Rehab Program Endorsements and Accreditation

Another sign of success is endorsements. Is the organization fully accredited? Is it a member of the Better Business Bureau? We always check these things out, and you should too. In order to make sure that you’re dealing with a creditable organization that can be relied upon to help you or your loved one get through a tight spot.

Accredited Drug and Alcohol Abuse Counselors

Another sign of success is whether the personnel of the drug rehab are accredited as drug counselors, and how much combined experience they have at their center in the field of drug rehabilitation. That’s something that’s very easy to find out.


These are some of the signs of success that we look for in seeking out new drug rehabilitation centers to refer to. Someone who has a problem with alcohol or who knows someone who does should really take these factors into account when considering going to or sending someone to a particular alcohol rehab.