July opening slated for drug treatment campus in Cecil County


Bracebridge-largeRecovery Centers of America plans to open a 70-employee  drug treatment center on  557 acres in Earleville, MD in July.

Recovery Centers of America at Bracebridge Hall will serve as a center of treatment, spirituality, wellness, and recovery for individuals struggling with addiction to alcohol and other drugs, a release stated.

This 108-bed in-patient treatment center will provide residential treatment and n support services.  RCA’s neighborhood-based treatment model is founded on scientific research indicating the sustained recovery is more likely when patients stay connected to family and friends during treatment, according to the release.

Designed in 1990 by architect David Easton, Bracebridge Hall is a  waterfront estate with gate houses, stables, a helipad, and one mile of shoreline on tributaries of the Chesapeake Bay. It was built as a conference center for credit card banking giant MBNA.


MBNA   was purchased by Bank of America and became one of its many surplus properties. At one point, its sales price was listed as $34 million.

RCA’s $13.7 million renovations of Bracebridge Hall has been executed with the patient at the forefront to eradicate the stigma of addiction, its treatment, and the recovery process. Patients and families begin their road to recovery via the two-mile driveway to Bracebridge Hall with  views of the Chesapeake Bay countryside.

RCA at Bracebridge Hall is under the leadership of Dr. Barbara Kistenmacher, Ph.D., clinical psychologist and chief executive officer for Recovery Centers of America at Bracebridge Hall.

Kistenmacher, according to the release,  has a deep passion for helping people from Cecil County and the surrounding areas.

“Bracebridge Hall plays a rich role in Earleville’s history. Today, it has been fully repurposed to serve the needs of the community by offering hope to area families struggling with substance use disorders, and bringing 70 full-time job opportunities to the local economy, generating over $4 million in salaries and benefits by the end of the year,” Dr. Kistenmacher stated.

In Maryland alone, 1,039 individuals lost their lives to drug- and alcohol-related intoxication incidents in 2014 – the latest available data – a 60 percent increase since 2010, according to the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. The misuse of prescription drugs and accessibility to street-level heroin nationwide has resulted in some 22.7 million Americans suffering from behavioral health and substance use disorders.

Cecil County and neighboring Delaware areas  have struggled with heroin and opioid abuse

RCA at Bracebridge Hall will also offer a specialty program for executives so that like-minded professionals can obtain education, skill-building, and support.

“RCA at Bracebridge Hall will provide our patients and their families with the dignified treatment so many struggle to obtain while battling substance use disorders,” stated Kistenmacher. “From the moment patients turn down our beautifully landscaped driveway, they will know they are valued, and our team is always on their side.”

The renovation is financed through a recent capital raising effort that provided RCA with $231.5 million to build centers for addiction medicine nationwide and hire the top minds in the industry.

At RCA at Bracebridge Hall, as with all of RCA’s campuses, patients and their families will enter a lobby more reminiscent of a hotel than any healthcare facility. They are immediately greeted by name and taken to a semi-private room that opens to bright and spacious meeting areas, café-quality coffee bars, a glass-face yoga studio,  dining room, and an outdoor patio and fireplace.

Public training and meeting rooms will be made available free of charge to the community for 12 step meetings, family support groups, and a variety of professional education programs. Including Bracebridge, RCA has acquired eight sites in the Northeast U.S. Current plans project RCA to operate over 1,200 beds by the end of 2018.

Based in King of Prussia, PA, Recovery Centers of America is opening treatment centers throughout the Northeast. By allowing patients to receive treatment in an atmosphere more akin to a college campus with Starbucks-like appeal, Recovery Centers of America helps overcome the stigma of addiction and its treatment, which is essential to meaningful recovery, the release stated.

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