Stepping Stones Unit at Meadville Medical Center

Call (814) 333-5810 to contact Stepping Stones Unit at Meadville Medical Center

1034 Grove Street
Meadville, PA 16335


Drug and alcohol addiction is a disease that plagues a huge number of people in the United States. Even the Centers for Disease Control is calling it an epidemic. As the addiction problem continues to grow, more and more people are in need of the services offered by addiction treatment centers. One such center is the Stepping Stones Unit at Meadville Medical Center.

The Meadville Medical Center is a full service medical hospital with a behavioral health unit. The addiction portion of the unit is simply referred to as the Stepping Stones Unit. This unit is attached to the main hospital and holds the same values and treatment standards as this award winning hospital. These awards include a 4 star hospital rating in patient satisfaction and many more for their various programs.

As an independent hospital and treatment program, Meadville Medical Center works very hard to meet all of the community’s needs. They maintain state of the art facilities and up to date treatment programs in all aspects including addiction treatment and addiction medicine.

Since addiction is considered a disease, Meadville Medical shows the same dedication to addiction science through the Stepping Stones Unit. They stay up to date on all new treatment methods and utilize both new treatments and those that are proven in the treatment of various addictions. They treat:

  • Alcohol addiction
  • Methamphetamine addiction
  • Prescription stimulant addiction
  • Prescription sedative addiction
  • Prescription opiate addiction
  • Heroin addiction
  • Cocaine addiction
  • Club drug and hallucinogen addiction
  • And many more

The Stepping Stones Unit provides a safe and comfortable place to detoxify and withdrawal from drugs or alcohol. Detoxification is the very important first step of any drug or alcohol addiction treatment program.

The Stepping Stones Unit combines medications, medication management, therapy, and counseling to make sure that you get off and remain off dangerous and toxic substances. This unit also provides crisis intervention and medical monitoring and management for those who are currently using or in withdrawal from drugs or alcohol.

Since the unit is attached to the hospital, they can provide emergency services for difficult, painful, or deadly withdrawal symptoms. They also provide doctors, nursing, staff, case managers, and social workers to help their clients through the difficult process of withdrawal.

As a hospital, they strive to continually improve and exceed the expectations of their patients and clients. They are also dedicated to improving all of their treatments in order to provide the community with safe, reliable, and thorough treatment services. Their standards include:

  • Creating an excellent treatment environment for each patient
  • Investing in the community around them
  • Providing safe, cost effective, and high quality care

As with most treatment centers of this kind, the Stepping Stones Unit provides both inpatient and outpatient services for addicts and their families. Their client centered treatment practices show that they are interested in allowing the client to dictate and guide their own treatment.

They understand that may addictions are caused by other factors such as:

  • Stress
  • Trauma
  • Emotional disturbance
  • Mental health issues
  • Life circumstances
  • Peer pressure
  • Poor physical health
  • Chronic pain disorders

They believe that if you treat these other factors, the addiction will no longer be necessary. People use drugs and alcohol as an escape. When using a substance to escape your problems, you may not see the problem for what it is. Most often the cause of the addiction can be coped with, treated, or otherwise eliminated. This allows you to work on the physical and psychological symptoms of addiction rather than simply falling back into escapist thinking.

Addiction ruins thousands of lives every year, the Stepping Stones Unit seeks to end the addiction before this happens. They do this through providing care and treatment as well as relapse prevention and other assistance.

Located in Meadville, Pennsylvania, the Stepping Stones Unit is easily assessable via Interstate 75 and Highway 19. It services Meadville and other nearby towns such as Fredericksburg.

The Stepping Stones Unit provides services regardless of race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender choice, age, creed, or ability to pay. They accept most insurance programs, Medicare, Medicaid, Tricare, military insurance, private pay, and state funded payment. In some instances, they can offer sliding scale payment and flexible payment schedules.


Like most treatment facilities of its kind, the Stepping Stones Unit is not a luxury facility. It does offer semiprivate rooms equipped with storage and a bathroom. Depending on the level of care necessary, they provide medical staff, medications, and medication management.

While in inpatient treatment, you will receive three meals a day that meet or exceed your dietary needs or requirements. Because they are attached to the Meadeville Medical Center they can offer many more services that stand alone or smaller detoxification centers have. Services like:

  • Emergency medical assistance
  • Onsite medication
  • Crisis Intervention
  • Stabilization services
  • Medical monitoring
  • Treatment for co-occurring or dual diagnosis conditions
  • A broad range of treatment options
  • Holistic treatment
  • Alternative treatment options

There are many more programs and amenities that you can access while you are at the Stepping Stones Unit should you need or want them.


Therapy and counseling are two very important parts of any detoxification and addiction treatment program. Counseling helps to root out the cause of your addiction so it can be treated without the use of dangerous substances, seeks to identify and correct the consequences caused by your addiction, gives you an understanding about your mental health and sobriety, and prevent relapse.

Stepping Stones offers individual counseling. This is one on one therapy with a counselor. It usually takes the form of talk therapy and is usually the most effective form of addiction treatment. During individual therapy you will talk to someone who knows about addiction and how to not only end your substance abuse but prevent it from happening again.

Group therapy is another important part of treatment that the Stepping Stones Unit offers. Group therapy allows you to speak with and hear the stories of other addicts while being guided by a counselor. It helps to reduce the isolation that addiction and addiction treatment can create. It helps you learn new ways of dealing with cravings, temptations, and withdrawal symptoms.

Medication assisted therapy is a medical therapy where doctors provide you with medications to treat your addiction and its withdrawal symptoms. Medications like Disulfiram, methadone, Suboxone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone as well as medications to treat individual symptoms or mental illnesses such as depression or anxiety are all useful in this form of therapy.

12 step therapy is similar to the 12 step programs started in the 1930s. The concept of 12 step therapy that utilizes addicts helping other addicts overcome their addiction, cravings, or other issues. The 12 steps give you a clear path to recovery and help you to treat your mind, body, and spirit.

Family Therapy is a form of therapy that involves your family member and those closest to you in your treatment. Addiction is a social disease that can deeply damage your relationships with those around you. Family therapy can help them deal with your addiction and repair the damage that your addiction has done.

These forms of therapy are the most common. Stepping Stones does use other forms depending on the individual, the addiction, and the circumstances. Many therapies can be combined to form a more effective treatment plan. Each form of therapy is valuable on its own and when used in conjunction with others.


The Stepping Stones Unit specializes in inpatient hospital detoxification and treatment. They do this by using medication assisted treatment.

Medication assisted treatment is the use of medications to alleviate or eliminate withdrawal symptoms during detoxification and treat addiction and other illnesses. This allows you to withdrawal safely from the drugs or alcohol and treats conditions such as chronic pain, mental illness, and other physical problems.

They also specialize in outpatient therapy. Outpatient therapy is detoxification and addiction treatment without the need to remain in a hospital setting. You can attend counseling and medical appointments daily, weekly, or monthly depending on your level of need. This allows you to be at home with your family during treatment, attend school, or work. You do not have to take time off of your life in order to receive outpatient treatment. In this form of treatment, relapse prevention is emphasized due to the availability of drugs and alcohol while you are in treatment.

Inpatient treatment is another specialty of the Stepping Stones Unit. During this form of treatment you remain at the treatment unit for detoxification and treatment. There are usually 30, 60, or 90 day programs to help you with your addiction. Although this is the safest form of treatment in respect to relapse and availability of addictive substances, but it does not allow you to work, go to school, or care for your family while you are in treatment.


The direct of the Meadville Medical Center is Kenlo McGowan who is dedicated to the smooth running of the entire medical facility including the Stepping Stones Unit. Some of the staff members are:

  • Barry Bittman
  • Valerie B. Waid
  • Mike Downing
  • Maryann Hewston
  • David Shaffer
  • Anne White

These staff member help in the day to day operations of the medical facility.

The Stepping Stones Unit also employs licensed or certified doctors, nurses, counselors, therapists, psychiatrists, behavioral health experts, case managers, social workers, financial coordinators, and support staff.

Each staff member is highly trained and participates in continuing education to make your treatment experience as beneficial as possible.

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