McLean Brook

A transitional, residential treatment program for individuals with substance use disorders

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McLean Brook FAQ

Where is McLean Brook located?

The program is located near to the Belmont campus, in Waltham, MA. For more information on directions, parking. and local accommodations, please visit our Maps & Directions page.

How old do I need to be to attend McLean Brook?

McLean Brook serves adults ages 17 and older.

What is the daily schedule for patients at McLean Brook?

The daily structure depends on your individualized treatment plan, although all residents are expected to attend McLean outpatient programming for dual diagnosis for the first two weeks. Recovery is intended to be the resident’s first priority, therefore, we request that you be prepared and on time for all groups, meals and other scheduled activities. 

You will be expected to be up, showered and fully dressed with breakfast completed and ready for groups as part of your treatment expectations.  Morning goals group is held at McLean Brook at 8:15 am every day except weekends, when it is held at 9 am. 

Lunch is at noon with attendance and full participation expected unless you have a prearranged commitment which staff is aware of, and for which you have a pass.  Outpatient groups and in-house or private individual sessions are held intermittently throughout the day, with an expectation that residents will participate in planned activities away from the residence after the first few weeks. 

Dinner is at 6 pm with attendance and participation expected unless excused, and each evening there are opportunities to attend self-help meetings at off-site locations.

There is a wrap-up group after curfew. If you are unable to participate, curfew may be moved earlier to allow meaningful participation.

Family sessions, in person or by phone, may be scheduled during the day and are arranged by you and your case manager.

What are the treatment expectations?

You are expected to work with your treatment team to devise an individualized plan for treatment, along with treatment goals. These goals are revisited and updated weekly in goal setting group, individual meetings, and rounds. You are expected to be aware of your goals and to adhere to your plan of treatment. In the event that you are struggling with your plan, you are expected to take responsibility to come to any member of your team for support.

Is there a patient and family resource guide for substance abuse treatment?

Yes. To view the patient and family resource guide, please click here.

What are my rights during treatment?

McLean Brook believes in the respectful treatment of residents, family members, and staff while providing a safe and supportive environment. McLean Brook provides a system to ensure that residents’ rights are being preserved and protected. These rights are provided in a handbook that will be received at the time of admission. If at any time a resident or family member feels their rights have been violated, they may contact the Civil Rights Officer at McLean Hospital at 617. 855.3406.

What is the confidentiality policy?

McLean Brook’s commitment to each resident’s confidentiality is ensured by our legal responsibility as mandated by state and federal law. Each staff member is dedicated to upholding these standards in all communications and records.

What do I need to bring?

  • Proper attire for therapy and all groups should be casual and not too revealing.  This includes: jeans, casual slacks, sport shirts, skirts and dresses that are knee-length or longer, jogging suits, and appropriate-length shorts.
  • Clothing that depicts alcohol, drugs, sex, violence, or gambling (or any clothing deemed inappropriate by staff) is not allowed.
  • An interview outfit if you plan to apply for a job or volunteer positions.
  • Flat-soled or tennis shoes are recommended. Shoes and/or slippers must be worn outside of the resident’s room.
  • Supplies of your prescription medications.  All medications, including non-prescription medications (i.e., Advil, Tylenol, etc.), vitamins, herbs, or nutritional supplements must be reviewed with the staff physician and nurse.
  • Residents are responsible for obtaining prescribed medications from Osco Pharmacy unless otherwise arranged.
  • Living will or healthcare proxy if relevant.
  • Cell phones and laptop computers are acceptable to use during resident’s free time.  They may not be used during groups. Cell phones may only be used in resident’s room or outside the building. Cell phones are not allowed outside resident rooms unless they are kept in pockets or purses due to the potential for confidentiality violations.
  • If residents bring a personal CD player and/or MP3 player they may be used only when groups/activities are not scheduled.
  • Personal reading material and videos/DVDs may be subject to review by staff.
  • If any staff determines that attire or other personal items are inappropriate, this decision is non-negotiable, and the item will be confiscated until discharge from the program.

What is the medication policy?

It is very important that you advise staff of all medications that you are currently taking including over-the-counter medications. Mouthwash, cough, cold, or any medication that contains alcohol is not allowed and will be confiscated by staff.  The following medications must always be stored in the medication closet and will only be dispensed with supervision from staff: Suboxone, Methadone, Barbiturates, muscle relaxants, opiate pain medications, amphetamines and benzodiazepines. 

Do I need spending money?

We suggest bringing approximately $200 to $300 for spending money, until you work on a budget with your case manager. Staff cannot provide or loan money. Transfer of money between residents is strongly discouraged. Items may be purchased on an as-needed basis during your stay. No deliveries for internet purchases will be accepted without staff approval and inspection of materials. All mail must be delivered to: 115 Mill Street, Mail Stop 236, Belmont, MA 02478.  Please do not have mail delivered directly to McLean Brook.

Can I smoke while receiving treatment?

McLean Brook considers the use of nicotine as an addiction. While we do not deny the use of nicotine products, we do address its use as part of addiction treatment. However, for those who do smoke, there is a designated area outside in the back yard of the building. Smoking in bedrooms, anywhere inside the residence, or in a non-designated smoking area may result in expulsion from the program, and you may be held financially responsible for the professional cleaning of drapes and bed linens.

Can I have a vehicle while in treatment?

You are allowed to bring a vehicle to the program after the first two weeks of treatment, once a car use contract has been reviewed and signed with your case manager. Vehicles must be parked on the McLean campus, which is a five minute walk from McLean Brook. If available, staff will drive residents to their vehicle.

Resident car use is dependent on adherence to program expectations, particularly regarding signing in/out, checking in/out with staff, returning on time, and being clear about treatment-related car use.

Is public transportation available?

Public transportation is readily available a few hundred yards from the residence. A van is available for transportion to groups on McLean campus, self-help groups, and planned community activities. Transportion is provided at the discretion of the staff and may be dependent upon staff availability and scheduling. The van is for resident and staff transport only, and is not available for guests and family members.

Can I have visitors?

Family and friends may visit during non-group hours from 10 am until 9:30 pm.  However, all visitors must check in with a staff member who may set limits on visits.  Visitors under the age of 18 must remain on the ground floor in common areas. 

In order to ensure confidentiality, cameras are not permitted to be visible at any time on the grounds. Physical or sexual contact is not allowed in the residence.  Forming new romantic relationships is strongly discouraged during early recovery as it interferes with the focus on treatment.

Please see our visitor accommodations list in order to find convenient overnight lodging for friends and family.

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