Impaired Professional Program

When doctors, nurses, pharmacists, lawyers and business executives are struggling with alcohol or drug addiction, the implications for that individual, their families and the public can be serious.

Professionals have worked hard to build careers and professional reputations. Yet a few bad decisions due to alcohol and drug addiction can result in a loss of their professional reputation, their job and potentially their ability to practice medicine, the law or to work their area of expertise in the future.

Many professionals have spouses and children who rely on them to help support the family financially and to be full participants in family life. When professionals are impaired due to alcohol and drug addiction, the individual and the entire family suffers.

Professionals also often work in safety-sensitive careers that require a great deal of public trust. Impaired professionals destroy that trust, and can put members of the public, such as their patients, clients, bystanders and others, at risk.

For these reasons, it’s of critical importance that impaired professionals choose an alcohol and drug rehab that has a specialized impaired professionals program. Positive Sobriety Institute offers addiction treatment for professionals that uniquely addresses addiction given an individual’s high stakes career. Our impaired professionals program is staffed by a multidisciplinary team of board-certified addiction medicine physicians, psychiatrists and other specialists who have the expertise and experience to help impaired professionals get on a path to restoring their careers and their lives.

Meeting the Treatment Needs of Impaired Professionals

Positive Sobriety Institute specializes in expert-delivered assessment, treatment and rehabilitation of addicted professionals with substance use and co-occurring disorders. Our intensive outpatient program (IOP), partial hospitalization program (PHP) and outpatient programs offer top-level medical care from specialists in addiction medicine and psychiatry combined with therapy, counseling and holistic treatments that heal the whole person.

The majority of patients at PSI are professionals, many in safety sensitive, high-stakes careers. We work closely with referring agencies such as professional boards and employee assistance programs to assure treatment adherence, accountability and compliance with licensing standards as required.

We are honored to help impaired professionals recover from substance use and find relief from the symptoms of co-occurring disorders so that they can achieve a happier, healthier and more peaceful life. We take our responsibility to heart, and offer professionals top-quality medical and clinical care, along with confidentiality, compassion and respect throughout their journey.

Professionals we treat include:

Impaired Professionals May Not Fit Addiction Stereotypes

The stereotype of an addict is someone whose life has totally fallen apart as a result of drug and alcohol use. But addicted professionals often don’t fit that stereotype. Their internal drive and success in the professional world allows them to keep the extent of their drug and alcohol use hidden for a long time from co-workers, employers and even their own families. Those closest to the addicted individual may not realize there’s a problem. Professionals with addiction may deny they have a drug or alcohol problem, even to themselves.

Working environments can often fuel alcohol or drug use as a way to stay alert, deal with stress, relax or get to sleep after a hard day. In some fields, including medicine and the law, it can be a badge of honor to endure difficult, high-stress working environments. Admitting to struggling or needing help is unthinkable. It can be difficult for people in powerful positions at work to admit that they feel powerless against alcohol and drugs.

Despite these barriers to seeking help for drug and alcohol addiction, the best time to seek treatment is before careers and families have been damaged. Substance use disorders are progressive. Eventually, the alcohol and drug use becomes impossible to hide. Positive Sobriety Institute can help addicted professionals get their lives back on track so that they can avoid the worst consequences of addiction.

Addiction Treatment for Professionals: High Success Rates

Addiction treatment for professionals requires specialized expertise. Discretion is of the highest importance because of the nature of professional careers in fields such as healthcare, law and business.

Men and women who are professionals have much at stake, including the possibility of losing their professional licenses and livelihood. Addiction treatment centers with impaired professional programs must know how to work with professional boards and other regulatory entities on fitness for duty assessments and other return-to-work requirements.

During our many years of treating impaired professionals at Positive Sobriety Institute, we have found that the success rates in achieving long-term abstinence tend to be much higher for professionals than for other groups of people. Impaired professionals often have a full life with many incentives to drive sobriety, including careers, family, friends and a respected place in the community. While overcoming drug and alcohol addiction is challenging, impaired professionals often have a strong sense of motivation to both achieve sobriety and maintain their recovery so that alcohol or drug addiction no longer hurts themselves or their families.

Many professional men and women are able to re-engage some of the same attributes that helped them to achieve educational and professional success. Those attributes include commitment and dedication in pursuing their goals, and strong support system of family, friends and co-workers.

But these positive traits don’t mean that impaired professionals should try to go it alone. By seeking alcohol and drug addiction treatment for professionals at Positive Sobriety Institute, men and women benefit from evidence-based treatment, therapy and support provided by our dedicated team of multidisciplinary experts who have many years of experience helping individuals recover. We also connect professionals in recovery with like-minded peers – other impaired professionals in recovery who understand the challenges of maintaining sobriety and offer support, friendship and sense of community that has been shown to be effective in preventing relapse.

Partnership with Northwestern University

In addition to our top-level medical expertise available on-site at our Chicago rehab, Positive Sobriety Institute is affiliated with the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. Both Dr. Daniel Angres, Positive Sobriety Institute Medical Director, and Dr. Anish John, Associate Medical Director, serve as adjunct professors of psychiatry at the university.

Through the affiliation with Northwestern, the Positive Sobriety Institute team collaborates with specialists at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago. Patients in alcohol and drug rehab for impaired professionals at Positive Sobriety Institute may also have complex health issues, including chronic conditions and dual disorders such as depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety disorders or other mental health issues. The partnership with Northwestern allows patients to have confidential access to a wide array of medical specialists from the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. Experts include pain medicine specialists, orthopedists, neurologists, cardiologists, hepatologists and gastroenterologists.

Our strategic alliance with Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine also allows us to continually incorporate the most recent research findings, derived from the best available research, into all our diagnostic and treatment modalities.

Comprehensive Assessment

We start with a thorough assessment to ensure patients receive an accurate diagnosis of addictive, emotional, behavioral and developmental disorders that may impact substance use and mental health. Using evidence-based methodology and a team-based approach, our board-certified psychiatrists, addiction medicine specialists and clinicians with specialized training in behavioral health help patients understand the root of their behavior, an essential first step in determining the most effective treatment plan.

This team-based approach delivers a comprehensive, objective and accurate diagnosis, which is the foundation of each patient’s individual care plan. This thorough approach to assessment also enables us to uncover and diagnose co-occurring medical or psychiatric conditions. These co-occurring conditions are addressed and treated at PSI, or by referral to the best available resource.

Integrated Approach

Positive Sobriety Institute takes a comprehensive approach to care that integrates medical and clinical treatments with holistic and spiritual care that heal the whole person. In IOP and PHP, we offer evidence-based treatments such as medication-assisted treatment (MAT) to reduce cravings and allow patients to focus on healing, and multiple forms of behavioral therapy in group and individual settings to help patients develop new ways of thinking and strategies for dealing with stress. We also apply lessons learned from Physician’s Health Programs and Lawyer’s Assistance Programs, which have documented high rates of success in helping addicted physicians and attorneys achieve long-term sobriety.

Continuing Care is an essential phase of treatment at Positive Sobriety Institute. In Continuing Care, patients may reenter the workplace or resume normal responsibilities, while maintaining a connection with psychiatrists and therapists at Positive Sobriety Institute. As part of Continuing Care, our clinical team will collaborate with Physician’s Health Programs, Lawyer’s Assistance Programs and other monitoring programs to maintain accountability, as well as other psychiatric or mental health professionals near where the individual resides to ensure a smooth transition home. During this time, we also help men and women get connected to recovery communities so that they can benefit from the ongoing support of sober peers.


“At the Positive Sobriety Institute we really have a commitment for people to not only stop using their drug of choice, to stop engaging in addictive behaviors, but also to be able to engage in life more fully and to grow in ways that may have been unavailable to them even before their addiction took hold.”

–  Dan Angres, MD, Medical Director

A Culture of Mutual Trust and Respect

At Positive Sobriety Institute, we understand the challenges that impaired professionals face when trying to overcome addiction and have developed a treatment process that is thorough and ensures the utmost privacy to protect every patients’ career.

We strive to create a high level of mutual trust and respect with each patient, their family members, referral sources, our colleagues, and the community. Establishing a culture of mutual trust is integral to our mission, core values, clinical standards, and of course, the expectation of excellence we hold ourselves to.

Led by Renowned Addiction Medicine Expert Dr. Dan Angres

Leading PSI’s extraordinary team is Dr. Daniel Angres, a nationally recognized expert in addiction medicine and addiction psychiatry. Board certified in addiction medicine, addiction psychiatry and psychiatry, Dr. Angres has 30 years of experience helping impaired professionals recovery from alcohol and drug addiction.

The Three M’s of Addiction Treatment Excellence

Scientific evidence reveals that the most effective care for addictive disease and co-occurring psychiatric illness has three qualities.

  • Multimodal care provides distinct, yet complimentary therapeutic modalities, such as, comprehensive medical and psychological evaluations, group, individual and family therapy, nutritional counseling, recreational therapy and spiritual care.
  • Multi-phasic treatment provides distinct “phases” of care, including evaluation, primary treatment (inpatient or outpatient), family counseling and continuing care.
  • Multidisciplinary care involves a team of experts from psychiatry, addiction medicine, psychiatric nursing, advanced practice nursing, neurology, internal medicine, psychology, social work, and licensed professional counseling. We consult with additional medical specialists as needed. Our team of experts from various clinical disciplines works cohesively, collaborating daily with each other and with each patient.

Drug and Alcohol Rehab for Professionals

At Positive Sobriety Institute, we understand that professionals who are battling substance abuse or alcoholism face unique challenges when trying to achieve sobriety. Professionals may feel ashamed to admit they need help because as leaders in their workplace and their communities —whether healthcare professionals, lawyers or executives—they have an enormous responsibility and are held to a higher standard of conduct.

Unfortunately, no one is immune to alcohol or drug addiction, including highly skilled and well-educated professionals. Yet the stigma associated with addiction often causes impaired professionals to deny they have a problem or not seek treatment due to fear of losing their job.

At Positive Sobriety Institute, our treatment programs are developed to help deliver impaired professionals from drug or alcohol addiction without putting their profession at risk. Effective alcohol and drug rehab for professionals must be highly customized and integrated to address the underlying issues. Our addiction treatment programs focus on providing for the specific treatment needs of professionals in an environment that is safe, discreet, and comfortable.

We urge any professional—lawyer, doctor, dentist, or business executive—who is facing a substance use disorder to seek treatment from a rehab facility with a specialized impaired professionals program. By getting help, individuals can protect their livelihoods, their family and their health from the destructive forces of addiction, and go on to live sober, happy and productive lives.

Get Help Now

The addiction recovery and rehabilitation experts at Positive Sobriety Institute are standing by 24/7 to answer your questions about our addiction treatment and rehabilitation program.