Veterans and First Responders Program - Brookdale

Veterans and First Responders Program

Stars & Stripes Program: Serving Those Who Serve

When an individual has put their country first or is in a first responder occupation—from a paramedic or firefighter to public safety officer or emergency personnel—they commit to a job that is truly selfless. But for some, the stressors of work or the past can become overwhelming, leaving individuals to turn to unhealthy ways of coping, like alcohol or drug use. 

The Stars & Stripes program at Brookdale is tailored to help veterans and first responders on the road to recovery from substance use disorder (SUD), as well as specifically reintegrate veterans into their community. 

Here’s what makes our Brookdale Stars & Stripes program different: 

  • Our setting – We’ve taken treatment out of the hospital and moved it to a warm, residential setting at our Scotrun campus on 110 expansive acres. Amenities range from a gym, 2 pools(indoor and outdoor) and theater, with plenty to do outdoors. 
  • Our approach – Each individual gets personalized treatment during their stay. Meetings with our trained staff are done on a one-on-one basis as well as in small group settings. 
  • Our services – Medically assisted treatment (MAT), dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), EMDR therapy, holistic therapies (such as yoga & Reiki) and family therapy are just a sampling of the services provided at Brookdale. Access to GeneSight DNA testing and biofeedback therapy is also available.
  • And the not-so-little things – Navigating finances or writing a resume can be new territory for veterans. Finding time to take care of the home can be hard for first responders because of their work hours. We provide extra attention and coaching to help them find success. 

Caring, Supportive Staff

We are honored to help our nation’s servicemen and servicewomen rebuild their lives. At Brookdale, veterans and first responders are treated with respect and compassion from every member of our organization, from intake and administration, to housekeeping and our chef and kitchen staff, and our clinical team that includes a physicians, primary therapists, nurses and more. Our program is led by Dawn Heimerle, MS, a clinical counselor with vast knowledge of substance use and trauma treatment, alongside Pat DeSarno, a certified recovery specialist and trauma certified who is the former Scranton Fire Deparment chief and in life-long recovery.

Trauma-Focused Care

Treatment for our military members and first responders is trauma-focused and customized. Our program provides a combination of one-on-one therapy and life skills building as well as small group sessions. Our patients frequently tell us that going through addiction recovery with like-minded individuals is a powerful and enlightening part of their rehab journey. 

We Accept Optum Community Care Insurance

Brookdale provides services to veterans with Optum Community Care insurance and a referral/consult from VA locations near us. Contact us to get more information about this important program. 

Help is a Phone Call Away, 24/7

A better life is possible, and it can start right here at Brookdale. Please call us at (570) 355-1267. We look forward to serving you. 


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