Frequently Asked Questions

What documents do I need to bring when I come for assessment to Dharma Counseling Services (DCS)?

It depends on the reason for the assessment you are seeking for. If you want treatment because you or someone who cares about you feels there is likely, or possibly, a substance use problem or mental health issues, just bring your payment of $125.00.

If you do not have a DWI but you are required for assessment for other legal charge or court case, child custody or divorce issue, school or job referral, just call Dharma Counseling Services (DCS) for a low cost comprehensive substance abuse assessment.

If your assessment is for a DWI charge, please bring a copy of the breath test (BAC) reading or blood test (which ever was taken), a certified lifetime driving record from each state in which you are or were licensed or received a ticket, payment of $100 cash or credit card, a copy of your ticket if you have it. If you do not have the driving record, DCS can get that for you online for cost ($10).

For DWI Assessments, DCS is required by the State of NC to collect the full $100 at the time of the assessment. If the assessment is a referral for school, court, a therapist or doctor, another treatment center, it helps to bring all paperwork or referral information you may have from who referred you. Payment is expected at the time of service for non-DWI assessments.

What does DCS’s outpatient substance abuse treatment consist of?

Treatment typically starts with a need of some type regarding use of a mind altering substance. It could be legal, school, job, or a personal need that has been identified as being related to substance use. The DCS is to obtain a comprehensive substance abuse assessment by a qualified substance abuse counselor usually by LCAS or CSAC

Substance abuse treatment is typically conducted in a group setting but will accommodate individual need. Substance abuse counselor facilitates the group session after check in. The next part of group is the “process” portion of the group. Participants tend to learn more from each other’s situations, actions, comments, progress, etc. than if just meeting with a counselor individually. There is interaction between participants, both supportive and informative. The value of the group setting is largely provided by peers in the group. The counselors bring a lot of training and experience to the group; but the peers have the current relevant experiences that provide most of the opportunities for learning and experiencing within the group. During this portion, each group member has an opportunity to discuss his/her situation, concerns, etc. regarding substance use; and any effects thereof. This part is usually the longest and, according to most participants, the most valuable.

Family counseling and education are valuable to substance abuse treatment. It benefits the treatment process when siblings, parents, grown or older children get involved with the counselor and the treatment.

Once the member successfully completes the group program, and is maintaining abstinence & recovery, they are welcome to attend group in $5 as long as they wish to attend. This allows the program graduate ongoing support in the early recovery phase after primary treatment is completed.

DCS’s 3 hour groups are 3 hours in duration for several reasons. The primary reason is our experience demonstrates the 3-hour group is clinically sound offering ample time for ending problems caused by alcohol or drug use. Once the group meeting starts, it allows participants more time for processing individual concerns in a safe environment. The format also allows participants to have to make fewer visits to our facilities to complete the same number of hours. It helps keep DCS cost-per-hour rate lower. It cost participants less money and gives better treatment outcomes. DCC offers groups on the weekend to accommodate client’s needs.

See our “Services” page to view the services you may receive at DCS to support your goals. Our number one goal with you is to help you never have another problem related to substance use, whether it is a physical, emotional legal, family, job, school, etc. problem.

Why can’t I get my drivers license restored even after I paid my fees and completed the treatment?

Often client either do not inform the assessment agency about their conviction or dismissal date. It is absolutely required for the state of NC to release a driver’s license for restoration. It is always up to the client to notify the DWI assessment agency of the conviction date or driver license cannot be restored until that time.

How is my assessment or treatment information get released to my attorney, employer, parents etc?

The only way DCS can release any information to anyone is when the client requests it and signs an “authorization to release information” form, sometimes called“consent to release information.” Without these, DCS is under Federal statutes requiring absolute confidentiality of all information. Confidentiality is one area all programs have to respect without question. The only exceptions to strict confidentiality are if there is a treat to harm oneself or someone else, a situation in which someone’s life is in danger or evidence of child abuse or endangerment.

What forms of payment are accepted?

Self Pay:

Insurance/Self Pay/Cash: Allows those without insurance to pay cash for services at a discounted rate if paying the full rate could cause financial hardship. DCS accepts most Health Insurance to include BCBSNC, United Health, Aetna, Optum and Cigna. Most Credit Cards and HSA/FHA are accepted with a minimum card processing fees. Payment through CashApp, PayPal, Venmo, Zelle and Money Order are available. DCS’S self-pay cost is among the lowest in the area. Payment plans may be arranged for post-trial DWI clients on a case-by-case basis.

The State of NC sets the ADETS fee at $160 for NC-DWI “508” clients. Fees paid to NC DWI Services assists clients with the cost manuals for NC DWI (508) clients.

Durham: (919) 655-9077

Low Cost Alcohol & Drug Assessments