Set Up To Fail
This predatory business model aims not to help people stay sober, but to create an environment where relapse is likely to occur so the excessive charges can continue. For Jamie, the lure of the new facility was its cheap rent. He left a proven sober living facility with rent of about $1,000 per month for one that charged $50 per month.
Jamie knew he had a problem, and he was eager to change his life for the better. The 23-year-old recent Michigan State University graduate was pursuing a career at a law firm while in recovery. He was driven to progress his career, taking on extra hours and more responsibilities at the firm.
At the same time, Jamie was left increasingly vulnerable. The predatory care facility directed him to a new doctor, a self-proclaimed “addiction specialist,” who prescribed Jamie a questionable mix of medications. One of those medications was Xanax, a highly addictive drug that’s not recommended for people in recovery. It was also a drug Jamie had abused prior to entering recovery.
In the four months after Jamie left his proven sober living facility, his insurance was billed for nearly $60,000 for urine and blood tests — many of which never occurred. While visiting family in Michigan for Thanksgiving in November 2016, Jamie’s signature was forged for testing that never happened. It was only two weeks later that Jamie lost his life.