Dr. Dennis Weis, Medical Director, Powell CDC

I came to Powell Chemical Dependency Center in 1986 to assist in treating patients with chemical dependency problems full time because it is a highly respected chemical dependency treatment program, originally under the medical directorship of Dr. Stanley Haugland.  I had previously been a patient in Powell CDC in 1980, and the experience was certainly a positive and life changing one.

Through the years at Powell I acquired a variety of skills in treating chemical dependency.  Ultimately I became certified in addiction medicine through the American Society of Addiction Medicine, became a fellow in the American Society of Addiction Medicine and also have been president of the Iowa Chapter of the American Society of Addiction Medicine since the mid-90's.  My work at Powell directly inspired and sharpened my abilities in serving chemically dependent patients, which became the primary focus of my career as a physician. 

In addition to providing a full-range of patient care including detox and rehab, Powell has historically been a leader in the State of Iowa in providing education and training on the problems related to chemical dependency. Representatives of Powell including myself have regularly provided lectures and educational series in a variety of settings including training of primary care physicians in their recognition of chemical dependency problems and initiation of therapy; a series of lectures at the annual Governor's Conference; and training programs for area and state wide treatment facilities, as well as law enforcement and judicial agencies.  

Powell CDC has also been involved in the process of criteria development for the treatment of chemical dependency throughout the Midwest as well as nationally with our input to the creation of the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) Patient Placement Criteria.  Powell has additionally been involved in state-level policy making that ensured these nationally recognized ASAM criteria for patient admissions, continuing stay, and discharge are used by treatment professionals in making patient care-related decisions. 

Additional opportunities that have been realized as a result of my work with Powell include involvement for the past 10 years with medication research for the treatment of methamphetamine dependence in conjunction with the National Institute of Drug Abuse and University of California Los Angeles, as well as the Veterans Administration.  This research is continuing presently and is expected to continue into the foreseeable future.  We also have been and continue to be involved in efforts directed at parity in the treatment of chemical dependency and mental health related issues. 

I have been afforded the opportunity to become involved in all of these efforts as a direct result of my association with the Powell Chemical Dependency Treatment Program.  I will always be grateful for that experience and the pleasure of working with so many other talented individuals functioning within this program.


D.A. Weis, M.D.