Schick Shadel Hospital Rehab Review — Counter-Conditioning Program

May 19, 2017 | by Edward | 0
Addiction Resource > Drug and Alcohol Rehab and Treatment Center Reviews > Rehab Reviews > Schick Shadel Hospital Rehab Review — Counter-Conditioning Program
Schick Shadel Hospital Review

Schick Shadel Hospital’s founder, Charles A. Shadel, established numerous of the approaches for alcoholism in use today. He formed the counter-conditioning treatment program for substance abuse, and in 1935 he opened up a mansion in Seattle, WA with the amenities of home for those who were then deemed as society’s outcasts: alcoholics.

In 1965, the Schick Safety Razor Company purchased the Shadel hospital after the then-chairman and CEO checked in as a patient and was liberated from the desire to drink just after one day—he invested $6 million in the research habit formation.

Schick Shadel Hospital Treatment, Programs, and Staff

The initial focal point of the counter-conditioning technique was alcoholism. Then, evidence-based research resulted in recovery programs for: nicotine, cocaine, marijuana, methamphetamines, prescription opioids, and heroin.

What is Counter Conditioning?

Counter conditioning, also known as aversion therapy, gets to the root of the addiction in the physiological and neurological processes of the brain by retraining against the pleasurable memories associated with using alcohol or drugs. According to the Schick Shadel Hospital, this helps patients create a recovery plan that is likely to succeed in the long-term.

How Does Counter Conditioning Work?

Environmental stimuli, such as taste, smell, sight, and setting subconsciously cause the brain to associate pleasurable feelings with alcohol and drugs—the root of the craving. These stimuli are used to create an aversion, or an unpleasant response, such as nausea. As a result the, the patient’s brain will associate the addictive substances with the negative feelings, thus eliminate the craving.

Treatment programs offered at Schick Shadel Hospital include:

  • Medical counter conditioning
    • Emetic treatment is used for alcohol counter conditioning to patients without medical limitations.
    • Faradic counter conditioning is administered for patients who are not medically appropriate for chemical counter-conditioning.
  • Professional counseling and education
  • Rehabilitation interviews (minimal sedation sessions and positive affirmations)
  • Relaxation therapy
  • Comprehensive pharmacy and laboratory service

The main rehabilitation program is 10 days, not including detox, followed by 48-hour reinforcement visits 30 days after treatment, and again at 90 days. After the 10 day treatment, Schick Shadel offers continual access to support groups and resources—patients out of the seattle area have the ability to teleconference into the meetings.

Medical Team

The Schick Shadel team prides themselves in a supportive atmosphere and consists of a medical doctor certified in addiction medicine, anesthesiologist, licensed nurses, registered dietitians, and counselors.

Schick Shadel Hospital Facilities and Extras


Private and semi-private rooms are offered in the medium-sized, handicap accessible facility—located minutes from the Sea Tac Airport. The Schick Shadel hospital is set in a quiet environment down a hill away from road noise.

Patients can enjoy the outdoors by using the walking path that goes around the property—many areas are set up for quiet contemplation. A smoking deck with heaters is available, as well as a gazebo for non-smoking patients.

Dietary Services

All meals and snacks are served in the cafeteria on a daily basis three times a day. Snack area is open 24/7 for coffee, tea, juice, popcorn, crackers, and fruit. In addition, patients can order a meal out from the large list of take-out menus.


Each room has a Wi-Fi, TV, DVD player, and a phone. The Schick Shadel facility has an exercise area, as well as an area to lounge and watch movies or play games. The lower level of the hospital has a fireplace with surrounding wing-backed leather chairs.

Rules and Regulations in Schick Shadel Hospital


Schick Shadel Hospital offers free consultations, by phone and in person—a private tour of the facility is welcome for in-person consultations. Be sure to let the admissions team know your entire list of prescribed medications as well as the dosage to ensure the hospital is prepared for your stay.

Insurance and Financial Assistance

Most insurance plans cover Schick Shadel’s treatment programs. The admissions department will work with insurance carriers to assess coverage. Total costs may vary, depending on the length of stay and other health care charges. Financial assistance may be available through a third party vendor contracted with Schick Shadel.

What to Bring?

  • Insurance card, driver’s license, payment.
  • Schick Shadel suggests clients to bring their own pillows for comfort.
  • Patients are allowed to take their cell phones, chargers, and laptops.
  • After admission, patients wear scrubs and robes, not street clothes.
  • Undergarments.
  • Slippers, flip-flops, or sandals are recommended and sneakers for the workout equipment.
  • Take all medicine in original prescription bottles.
  • Toiletries.
  • Smoking is allowed in designated area.

What’s Not Allowed?

  • Pets are not allowed—documented service animals are an exception.
  • No Firearms.
  • No open over-the-counter medications or supplements.

Schick Shadel Hospital Review, Summary, and Main Complaints

As the longest-running chemical dependency treatment program in the U.S. Schick Shadel’s programs have helped over 60,000 patients, over the course of 80 years, attain freedom from addiction. Schick Shadel claims, “by treating addiction as a medical condition—not a moral failure—we allow patients their dignity while providing the tools to rebuild their lives.”

Based on online reviews there are some people concerned with the cost of the program in relation to the treatment received. Majority of reviewers rate the care given to be above their expectations. One high-rated Google review stated, “They are not magicians, you still have to want to quit.”

In response to a negative review regarding the emetic treatment, Schick Shadel’s CEO commented, “Schick Shadel’s treatment has a 65% success rate that has been tracked since the early 1940’s thru study’s and contacting patients after 1 year of treatment. Having said that it clearly doesn’t work for everyone (35%).”

Schick Shadel Hospital’s Social Media Profiles and Address

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