N.J. watchdog group finds the state’s substance abuse and treatment industry rife with corruption and abuse

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Substance abuse and addiction treatment is a multi-billion-dollar business in New Jersey. But the State Commission of Investigation’s Dirty Business Behind Getting Clean report found that while many residents and their families have benefitted from different programs and services, there are some who have been victimized by dishonest and unscrupulous practices.

“The addiction rehabilitation industry in New Jersey is rife with abuses by owners, operators and other professionals,” said Kathy Hennessy Riley, the SCI assistant director for communications and public affairs.

She said sometimes these practices were detrimental to the patients who were seeking treatment.

The investigation was launched after the commission received allegations that the industry was vulnerable to subversion and manipulation.

The report, which was released today, found that a range of financial misconduct and unethical behavior occurred at every stage of the rehabilitation process.

“Sometimes it started as early as an overdose victim’s first encounter with an addiction professional at their hospital bedside, or during an online search for treatment,” she said. “We found that at every juncture within the addiction-rehabilitation industry, abuses and fraud and corruption existed.”

Hennessy Riley said the SCI found that it was more profitable for corrupt operators to keep patients stuck in the cycle of addiction treatment and relapse.

  • February 8, 2024
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