About Enterhealth

From the start, it’s been about
results, recovery and respect

Enterhealth is a drug and alcohol addiction treatment company offering the full continuum of care, including Enterhealth Ranch, the residential treatment facility, and Enterhealth Outpatient Center of Excellence.

To the founders, this company has never been a business; it’s a labor of love. After two close friends tragically lost children to alcohol addiction, David Kniffen Sr. and David Kniffen Jr. made it their personal mission to give back to the community by helping others overcome their addiction struggles. They quickly learned the treatment industry had not progressed past the original 1930s twelve-step program, which failed over 80% of the time. They were shocked that a program could post such poor results, and still enjoy such widespread adoption. In addition, many facilities were charging tens of thousands of dollars for the same treatment that could be had for free in Alcoholics Anonymous meetings across the country.


As successful entrepreneurs, they took it upon themselves to find a better way. In the spring of 2006, a team consisting of some of the world’s most renowned and experienced addiction treatment experts was pulled together to do just that. This team included:

  • Harold C. Urschel II, MD, MMA
    Founder of CNS Research Group, Provider of Research Services for Clinical Trials
    National Speaker on Substance Abuse, Research and Treatments
  • Deni Carise, PhD
    Director of Treatment Systems Research, Treatment Research Institute
  • Jeanne Obert, PhD, MFT
    Executive Director, Matrix Institute on Addictions
    Director of Clinical Training, UCLA/Matrix Coordinating Center for CSAT, MTP
  • Walter Ling, MD
    Professor of Psychiatry, UCLA
    Founding Director, Integrated Substance Abuse Programs, UCLA
    Principal Investigator, National Institute on Drug Abuse
  • Thomas McLellan, PhD
    Founder and President of the Treatment Research Institute
    Former U.S. Deputy Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy

Starting with the latest National Institutes of Health research indicating addiction is a chronic brain disease – one that can be successfully treated utilizing appropriate medical and psychological protocols – the team created a unique program that would lead to personalized plans for each patient and yield results more effective than traditional programs.

Enterhealth also earned The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval® for Behavioral Health Care Accreditation by demonstrating continuous compliance with its performance standards. The Gold Seal of Approval® is a symbol of quality that reflects an organization’s commitment to providing safe and effective care.

In addition to creating a better way to recover, the team agreed on a number of principles that would lead to a better way of delivering care:

Enterhealth Founding Principles

  • Our people must be willing to serve, not just provide a service.
  • Build a culture that will attract the most qualified, most honorable people.
  • Develop a reputation of integrity, both internally and externally.
  • Instead of striving for business success, strive for significant positive impact in our community.
  • Treat patients and their families as we would like to be treated, with the utmost respect and dignity.
  • Measure our success solely by the success of our patients.

Beginning with only a few employees, the company has quickly grown in staff, patients treated and national reputation. The Kniffens still strive to be community stewards, putting all moneys back into the company towards growth and improvements, and remaining debt-free. The Kniffens and the Enterhealth team refuse to allow their treatment approach to be mandated by any entity, choosing, instead, to concentrate solely on providing the best possible treatment for their patients.