Our Editorial Process

Ensuring Reliable, Accessible, and Trustworthy Information

At Cornerstone, we genuinely care about your well-being, and we’re dedicated to providing you with reliable, accessible, and trustworthy information to support your recovery journey.

We follow a carefully crafted Editorial Process to ensure that you always receive the best information.

Our Editorial Process is the heart of what we do, created by our dedicated team at Cornerstone.

But you might wonder, what exactly does this process involve?

How do we make sure that everything we share meets our high standards?

Our team meticulously creates and reviews every piece of content based on four key principles:

These pillars ensure that you always have access to up-to-date, evidence-based information when you need it most.

Building and Maintaining Trust

Finding addiction treatment and mental health information is easy, but it can often be confusing, overwhelming, and sometimes inaccurate or irrelevant.

At Cornerstone, we understand how frustrating that can be, and we’re here to make a difference.

Our goal is to provide content that you can trust.

We focus on accuracy and evidence-based information that is clear, understandable, and accessible.

We also approach everything with empathy and ensure our advice is practical and actionable.

We believe in addressing your overall well-being and helping you understand the important link between health and lifestyle.

We call this approach “whole person health.”

To support this, we cover a wide range of topics and perspectives openly and objectively.

Everyone’s journey to better health is unique, and we are committed to inclusivity and empathy.

We are here for you, free of judgment, to support your pursuit of recovery and overall wellness.

Upholding the Highest Journalistic Standards

When you turn to Cornerstone for health-related information, we understand the importance of providing you with accurate, reliable, and high-quality content.

Our commitment is to uphold the highest journalistic standards, ensuring that our news and educational material is unbiased, balanced, timely, actionable, research-backed, honest, and comprehensive.

We also strive to present individual perspectives with empathy, honesty, and respect in our feature content.

Here’s how we ensure we meet these standards:

  • We carefully select and regularly train our contributors. Our in-house editorial team handpicks expert writers and contributors, ensuring they have both subject matter expertise and relevant life experience. We train them on best practices for research and sourcing and provide regular feedback and ongoing coaching.
  • The information we provide is carefully reviewed for medical accuracy by a team of medical experts. These experts are part of Cornerstone’s Medical Network, which includes healthcare professionals from research institutions, professional organizations, and private practices. With extensive expertise in their respective fields, our medical reviewers bring valuable perspectives from their clinical practice, research, and patient advocacy experiences.
  • We carefully review all the brands/businesses we collaborate with and feature in our content. Our Treatment Center and Content Team thoroughly examines the business practices of partner brands and assesses their medical and health claims based on current scientific evidence.
  • A team of skilled recovery writers, editors, and medical reviewers creates our addiction treatment/mental health content. Together, they work to provide clear and accurate information to address your questions and understandably present complex medical details.
  • Our news team keeps up with the latest information. Experienced writers and professional fact-checkers create our news content, delving deep into the most recent medical research daily to keep you informed about the world of health.
  • All content is checked to meet our standards. Before publication, our in-house editorial team reviews every piece of content, ensuring it meets our rigorous standards for clarity, accuracy, quality sourcing, and inclusive and empathetic language.

Prioritizing Accuracy, Empathy, and Inclusion

At Cornerstone, our top priority is making sure everything we publish is easy for you to access and understand.

To achieve this, we follow a specialized style guide based on the Associated Press Stylebook.

This helps our writers and editors focus on readability, clarity, empathy, inclusivity, real-life application, quality sourcing, and clear citations.

We strive to communicate in a warm and approachable manner while also being brave and progressive.

Our voice is not only transparent and friendly but also consciously respectful.

We use language that promotes inclusivity and compassion, telling judgment-free stories with empathy.

We make intentional choices to eliminate stigma, avoid stereotypes, and prevent bias.

Our commitment to conscious language is ongoing.

We regularly engage with community advocates and research language trends within health communities.

We carefully choose our words to combat stigmas and empower you.

As language evolves, so do we.

We understand that health impacts everyone differently, and we respect people’s choice of words when sharing their personal stories.

Ultimately, we can’t be true allies unless we center our efforts around you.

Our use of language reflects this commitment, ensuring you feel seen, respected, and supported.

Continuously Monitoring and Updating our Information

When you’re exploring our content, you might notice a few different dates.

These dates represent various steps in our editorial process to ensure the accuracy and currency of the information we provide, as we are committed to offering you the most reliable and current information possible.

For example:

  • The “written on” date indicates when the content was created and published on our site.
  • The “medical review” date appears whenever an expert from our Medical Network reviews the content.
  • The “fact-checked” date is added each time our professional fact-checkers verify the information.
  • The “updated on” date shows when the content has been modified, whether it’s to correct minor inaccuracies, add new information, replace images and sources, or make any other changes to enhance the value of the content for you.

Additionally, we keep our content fresh and accurate through several ongoing processes:

  • Regular audits: We regularly review our content to update changes in language, medical terminology, and trends within health communities.
  • Annual brand vetting: Every year, we re-evaluate the brands we’ve vetted. If there are any changes in how these brands perform against our criteria, we update our content accordingly.
  • Timely updates every day: Our news team keeps a close eye on developing stories and promptly publishes updates on the most significant health news.
  • Immediate action from feedback: We value your feedback and act on it quickly. If you spot any issues with our content—whether it’s inaccurate, outdated, unclear, or contradictory information—we take immediate action. Our editorial and medical teams research your feedback, determine necessary revisions, and promptly republish the updated content.

Our Editorial Process - Designed with You in Mind

At Cornerstone, you are our highest priority.

We’re here to support you on your journey to recovery and wellness, and our Editorial Process is crafted to provide you with the most accurate, relevant, and accessible content possible.

We are always striving to improve, and your feedback is invaluable to us.

If you ever have questions or comments about the accuracy or usability of our content, or if you feel an article is outdated, please let us know.

Your insights help us serve you better, and we’re here to listen and make the necessary changes to meet your needs.

Meet Our Editorial Team!

Our Medical Reviewers

Picture of Lionel Lionel Estrada, LISAC

Lionel Lionel Estrada, LISAC

Clinical Director
Lionel is a Licensed Independent Substance Abuse Counselor (LISAC) and has been with Cornerstone for over 4 years, beginning as a Primary Therapist then moving into the Clinical Director role. Lionel’s passion for helping people shattered by addiction has led him to become a fully trained EMDR therapist as well as a Certified Clinical Trauma Therapist. “Recognizing that drugs and alcohol are only part of the equation has opened my heart and mind to becoming trauma informed in my approach to helping our most broken fellow human beings.”

Picture of Dr. Yar Khan, MD FACP

Dr. Yar Khan, MD FACP

Medical Director | Phoenix
Dr. Yar Khan earned his medical degree at the Medical University of the Americas in Nevis, West Indies. He completed his clinical training in the United States in Houma and New Orleans, Louisiana, and Chicago, Illinois. He then performed his internship and residency in internal medicine at the Mercy Hospital and Medical Center in Chicago, Illinois. Certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine, Dr. Yar Khan has special interests in outpatient primary care and hospitalist medicine including critical care. He has proficiency in endotracheal intubation, central venous catheterization, paracentesis, thoracentesis, lumbar puncture, and arthrocentesis.

Picture of Dr. Stacey Smith PHD

Dr. Stacey Smith PHD

Chief Clinical Officer
Stacey is a licensed psychologist in Arizona and Texas and has worked in the addiction field in residential and IOP settings since 2010. He has a wide variety of experience in addiction, including working with individuals who suffer from addictions to alcohol, drugs, intimacy/relationships, sex, and gaming addictions. Early in his career, Dr. Smith trained in EMDR techniques, knowing the critical role that trauma work plays in the recovery process. Most recently, an examination of how the brain works and how technology can play a crucial role in client recovery has been a focus of his work.

Our Content Writers

Picture of Susana Spiegel

Susana Spiegel

Director of Digital Marketing | Recovery Writer
Susana is a recovery, mental health, and addiction education enthusiast with 8 years in addiction recovery. Susana holds a Bachelor’s in Theology from GCU and is committed to providing factual information on addiction and recovery.

Picture of Julie Miller

Julie Miller

Content Marketing Manager | Recovery Writer
Julie is a recovery advocate, with over four years sober. She is a recovery speaker who believes people can change for the better. Her mission is to write factual, helpful information about addiction, treatment, and recovery. She believes that no one should be left in the dark at any stage of their recovery.

Picture of Dane Perikly

Dane Perikly

Director of Virtual Services | DUI Education Writer
Dane is the Director of Virtual services at Cornerstone. He also contributes factual guides on DUI education so that you can understand all there is to know about DUI laws, DUI education, getting through the process of dealing with a DUI, and getting back on the road.

Picture of Bliss Lavelle

Bliss Lavelle

Recovery Content Writer
Bliss Lavelle is a writer inspired by her family’s battle with addiction, aiming to empower Gen Z through her work, highlighting the challenges of addiction and the rise of fentanyl overdoses among her peers.