Pilots Treatment Program

At Talbott Recovery, we value a comprehensive approach to pilot wellness. Our goal is to provide a seamless continuum of care that incorporates a consideration of physical, mental and cognitive health and promotes pilot vitality, mission readiness, flight-safety and protects the Federal Airspace.

Programs & Services

About Our Pilots Program

We understand the particular challenges of being a pilot and the consequences of a wrong diagnosis. We promote recovery versus compliance and illuminate emotional “blind spots” to minimize the probability of relapse. By doing this we enhance recovery and help the aviator navigate the HIMS and FAA processes.

The Facts About Talbott Recovery’s Pilots Program:

  • For many years we have successfully helped ready pilots to return to work as soon as clinically indicated, cutting through red tape and indecision that needlessly slows down those ready to return to work
  • We make our diagnosis based on scientific and regulatory guidelines of substance use AND other psychiatric ailments, allowing the treatment of the condition to happen sooner rather than later and ultimately shortening the wait time before the pilot can request Special Issuance
  • We have 3 full-time, dual-boarded HIMS Qualified Psychiatrists
  • Our consulting neuropsychologist is HIMS trained/qualified and Aeromedical Psychology Section trained
  • There is a sizable cadre of pilots in treatment with us at any one time, which provides the opportunity for genuine peer milieu
  • Pilots are abstinent from prescribed substances for the duration of their monitoring period in 9 out of 10 cases
  • We offer seamless aftercare follow-up for pilots in the Atlanta area and referrals for those who live elsewhere
  • We offer monitoring for SSRI medications with psychiatry and neuropsychology per FAA regulations
  • Offer multiple on-site Birds of a Feather meetings each week

Pilot’s Program at a Glance


  • Addiction and dual diagnosis treatment for pilots with co-occurring mental illness, trauma or sexual disorder
  • LGBTQI specialty group
  • Family Programming
  • Customizable individual therapy
  • Continuing Care Program tailored to individual needs and FAA Criteria
  • Return Visits – Six times per year we hold 2 full days of treatment for our alumni. Return visits are accessible on an unlimited basis after our pilots discharge. Some use return visits as a way of staying connected with their recovery community, some need a refresher or recovery tune-up and others we have built return visits into their post-treatment plan. This is a rare service that Talbott offers for alumni to have reconnection, accountability and tools to continue building the foundation of their recovery.
  • Relapse Track

Our intensive therapeutic interventions are focused on:

  • Importance of diminishing denial and promoting honesty
  • Enhancement of self-awareness and empathy and the impact of addiction on others
  • Developing the vocabulary of emotions and recovery
  • Promotion of appropriate self-assertion and confidence
  • Examination of the results of resentment
  • Developing more effective communication
  • Reintegrating the family
  • Attention to co-occurring conditions

Talbott’s treatment team includes:

  • 3 Full-Time HIMS Qualified Psychiatrists
  • Clinical & Aeromedical Neuropsychologist
  • Individual therapist available
  • Family Therapist
  • Care Coordinator
  • Trauma or CSAT Therapist, if applicable
  • RA’s
  • Nursing Staff

Talbott’s Clinical Team meets every morning to continuously modify our pilots’ treatment plans to meet their needs.

Pilot’s Program Day-to-Day

Upon arrival each pilot is given a detailed agenda for their five weeks of treatment, also known as their “Flight Plan”

  • Orients pilot to the program
  • Outlines a series of assignments and tasks to complete during treatment
  • Purpose: to familiarize them with the principles of recovery and establish their connection to the recovering community

Treatment requires a sophisticated program schedule that balances breaking down with building up

  • Breaking down: denial, distorted beliefs, avoidant tendencies, communication deficits, blind-spots
  • Building up: hope, communication skills, honesty, trust, ability to tolerate reality

Types of groups:

  • Process Groups: deep self-examination identifying patterns and distortions that feed addiction and other associated problems
  • Educational Groups: teaching and practicing alternatives such as assertiveness, mindfulness and trusting relationships
  • Recovery Groups: teaching and connecting to the concepts and practices of recovery for ongoing support and personal growth. Recovery Support Meetings in Atlanta community on weekends.

Why Should I Choose Talbott Recovery’s Pilots Program?

Our pilots program is 35 calendar days in order to meet the FAA mandate for 28 treatment days. Our pilots are incorporated into the community of their peers during our 72-hours assessments and this allows them to self-assess. This happens in attending the Birds meeting that we hold on campus too, where they “evaluate similarities and differences” with other pilots that are in various stages of recovery. The outbrief at the end of the 72-hour assessment also allows the pilot to be presented with the data that he or she generates, which becomes a powerful risk self-assessment tool, and many times helps the pilot break through the blinders of the disease. On the contrary, if the pilot does not meet diagnostic criteria, then we provide the opinion to allow them to move through the circumstances that brought them into the evaluation, and back into the cockpit.

Talbott treatment provides end-to-end coverage of the airman’s needs from problem identification, to treatment, to aftercare, to return to work evaluation with the pilot reasonably expected to be back at work in six months from start to finish. That time frame is half that for most other pilots who do not use the program.

Skyline Program

The Skyline program at Talbott Recovery Campus provides comprehensive psychiatric and neuropsychological services to aviators from commercial and general aviation sectors. The staff is HIMS-trained and qualified with more than 40 years of combined experience and has helped pilots with all types of complex aeromedical issues that affect the medical certificate. Among these are substance abuse, mood disorders, ADHD, HIV, CVA and other medical conditions, fitness for duty, and training-related issues. Services are performed on an outpatient basis and all reports and communication to the FAA and, when required, employers conform to FAR requirements and FAA medical standards. Located just 10 minutes from KATL, the program has seen pilots from scores of US and internationally flagged carriers.

Do you still have questions?

We want you to have all the answers you need to begin the recovery process fully informed. Call us 24 hours a day to speak with an Intake Specialist (678-251-3189), or contact us online. We look forward to speaking with you.

Are you or a loved one struggling with addiction?

We can offer a way out. A lifetime of recovery and treatment is just one phone call away. Take a step toward a happier, healthier life.