Contrary to its name, The Saint Jude Retreats is not a religious alcohol treatment facility, nor do they provide religion-based treatment. Rather, The Saint Jude Retreats provide cognitive behavioral learning as a means of overcoming substance abuse. By doing this, they classify themselves as an alternative to traditional alcohol addiction treatment. Patients are able to select from several retreat options for their recovery program, lasting generally six weeks, with an accelerated four week executive retreat also being offered.

Rank Chart
Success Rate
Program Duration
Our Score
30–90 Days
4–12 Weeks
No Limit
6 weeks

The Good

  • A different approach to treatment
  • Rooted in independent research
  • Online reviews and patient referrals

A Different Approach to Treatment

There are no steps and no group support meetings. The Saint Jude Retreats first teaches patients what alcoholism and associated drug use is, they debunk many myths associated with alcohol abuse, and they then provide personalized instruction through the science of neuroplasticity with their proprietary cognitive behavioral learning process.

With this different approach to alcohol abuse treatment, The Saint Jude Retreats address addiction not as a disease but as habitual behavior based on lifestyle choices. To combat this learned behavior, they treat alcohol abuse with cognitive therapy that promotes behavioral learning. This can be helpful for patients who have undergone unsuccessful treatment in the past and are looking for an alternative method to what has not worked for them in the past. And patients are given resources to apply during treatment that will be used for the rest of their lives.

Rooted in Independent Research

The Saint Jude Retreats have been researching cognitive therapy and how to apply it to alcohol abuse for 24 years. During this time, they have published and reported on their findings. This information is available for patients when making the decision whether or not to choose The Saint Jude Retreats as the solution to alcohol abuse.

And while The Saint Jude Retreats may not be a viable approach for every patient, the facility has provided long term success to 62.5% of its patients. This statistic is independently verified by a third party research organization that continually follows up with patients each year following treatment. And while 62.5% does not seem like a high number, it provides a realistic view on treatment and the long-term efficacy of cognitive therapy as a treatment for alcohol abuse, when compared to similar short-term studies related to other treatment methods.

Online Reviews and Patient Referrals

With numerous on-site, real patient reviews, The Saint Jude Retreats provides prospective patients with access to real patient stories and commendations. The facility boasts a 30% referral rate of incoming patients who chose The Saint Jude Retreats exclusively based on a past patient’s experience.

The Bad

  • Lack of On-site Detox/Medical Care
  • Lack of Insurance Coverage
  • No National/State Certification

Lack of On-site Detox/Medical Care

The Saint Jude Retreats is not a medical facility. They do not have on-site detox or detoxification resources of any kind. Rather, patients who make a reservation with The Saint Jude Retreats are encouraged to schedule detox before arriving for their retreat. Patients are able to find assistance from The Saint Jude’s Retreat in locating detoxification services that are right for them, but this will need to be lined up before the patient’s retreat begins.

Lack of Insurance Coverage

The Saint Jude Retreats does not qualify for coverage by most PPO insurance plans. There are funding options available, but this is on a limited basis and may or may not provide full coverage for a patient’s treatment.

No National/State Certification

The Saint Judes Retreat is a not-for-profit, 501(c)(3) organization; however, they are not accredited by any national or state organizations. This is mainly due to the lack of on-site medical facilities that require certification, but it also contributes to the lack of insurance coverage for their provided treatment. Their cognitive therapists are individually certified and accredited to practice medicine.

The Bottom Line

For patients who have undergone failed treatment in the past, The Saint Jude Retreats may be a great option for long-term, sustainable alcohol abuse recovery. But for patients who have not yet attempted traditional treatment options, and who qualify for insurance coverage for traditional treatment, may want to consider that funded option before pursuing care from The Saint Jude Retreats.

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