Because of perceived high prices, only a small percentage of individuals with addiction pursue treatment. The cost of rehab, however, is minuscule compared to the potential health and social costs of avoiding treatment. Getting help now can help you prevent these negative consequences.
Each day, millions of Americans walk around with an addiction. However, only a fraction of the population seeks treatment.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, more than 23.5 million people grappled with a drug or alcohol addiction in 2009. Only 2.6 million, just over 11 percent, received treatment.
Why is this? Part of the reason relates to the costs. Between 2011 and 2014, almost 40 percent of Americans with a substance use disorder that required treatment didn’t go to rehab because they believed they could not afford it or they did not have health insurance.
Many people do not want to pay thousands to attend rehab, even when addiction has overtaken their lives. Fortunately, the Affordable Care Act requires companies to offer competitive insurance plans to full-time employees and calls for states to offer comprehensive health insurance plans to individuals. Medicaid and Medicare also provide health care coverage to millions of Americans who don’t have employer-based or private insurance.
The ACA also requires plans to cover addiction treatment, but insurance doesn’t cover everything. Like other health services, patients will have to pay some costs out of pocket.
But there are a variety of ways to pay for rehab, and it’s worth it. In addition, the prices have declined collectively over the last decade. But the cost of treatment varies by facility.
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Before learning costs, individuals should know the various programs offered by treatment centers and how they help those experiencing addiction. The path to treatment includes several stages, some more intensive than others.
Detox, the process by which drugs are eliminated from the body, is the first stage. Detoxification is intended to mitigate withdrawal symptoms.
A clinically intensive level of care, intensive inpatient care provides treatment to individuals with complex addiction symptoms, including co-occurring disorders.
Residential programs aim to assist individuals in changing their behaviors. This treatment stage occurs in a structured setting, preparing individuals for a return to their respective communities.
Outpatient care allows individuals to live at home and receive care through a series of appointments. Patients learn to be drug-free without living at a facility.
A more comprehensive version of outpatient care, intensive outpatient treatment generally provides patients with multiple appointments per week for about three hours per day.
This treatment option is intended for patients who need intense treatment during the day but can return to their stable home environment each evening.
Hundreds of facilities are scattered across the U.S., each unique in their own way. Although prices vary, these centers share a universal mission: to free individuals from the grips of addiction.
Addiction centers nationwide set different prices for the same programs. For example, some inpatient treatment centers in Florida charge as little as $500 per week, while others charge as much as $100,000 per stay. A number of factors, including location, influence this disparity.
Insurance makes a difference. Many agencies cover a great deal of treatment, preventing patients from a heavy financial burden upon their release.
While some treatment centers can be quite expensive, some facilities offer payment assistance or sliding fee scales. Other locations offer programs free of charge, paid for by state taxes. These state-sponsored programs typically have long waiting lists.
Support groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous are another option for people in recovery. For more than eight decades, the 12-step programs have helped millions maintain sobriety through regular meetings. Some faith-based organizations offer free treatment options as well.
Many variables influence addiction rehab prices, including:
Most treatment programs run between 21 and 90 days, though some can be as long as 180 days. The longer you stay, the more you pay. The length of stay is contingent on an individual’s goals, the severity of addiction, their response to treatment and their type of insurance plan.
Inpatient and residential treatments are generally priced higher than outpatient, as patients receive around-the-clock care on-site. Generally, the average cost of outpatient care is a fraction of what most inpatient programs cost. Detox treatment costs an average of $1,700 per day.
Some facilities provide special amenities for their patients, including personal chefs and private rooms. For example, Next Generation Village, located in Sebring, Florida, offers an exercise gym, laundry facilities and sporting activities.
High quality facilities without special amenities cost between $10,000 and $20,000 per month, on average, according to data from a 2008 study in the U.S. National Library of Medicine.
A beachside treatment center generally costs much more than one in an urban setting. For example, the Loft, a sober-living facility in Brooklyn, New York, runs around $8,500 per month. Promises, a luxury rehab center nestled on the beaches of Malibu, California, can cost as much as $120,000 per month.
Insurance is the most common payment option for rehab. Every plan is different, and most plans require patients to pay deductibles or copayments. The Affordable Care Act requires all insurance plans to cover treatment for mental health problems, including substance use disorders. In rare cases, patients may pursue treatment without the help of insurance.
Paying for rehab completely out of pocket is rare, but some individuals choose to pay out of pocket for luxury rehab facilities or to conceal their treatment from employers. Most drug rehab facilities have rates for cash payment.
Out-of-pocket payments may be more feasible for less intensive outpatient treatment. Intensive residential treatment is much more expensive. The cost of payment depends on the facility and the type of treatment provided, and the cost of rehab can range from $5,000 to $50,000.
Individuals who pay for drug rehab out of pocket may consider raising money in a variety of ways. They may sell personal items, downsize their living situation, ask for loans from friends and family or ask for cash donations.
Paying out of pocket isn’t realistic for many people. If a patient is enrolling in a residential treatment program, he or she will likely be out of work for at least 30 days. That amount of missed time can cause bills to stack up, making copayments and deductibles difficult to afford.
The goal of drug and alcohol rehab programs is to set the person in recovery up for success after treatment, not to bankrupt them. Most facilities offer affordable financing options that are developed based on individual circumstances. Some facilities also offer monthly scholarships that help cover some of the costs of treatment.
Patients might also apply for personal loans to cover the remaining costs of treatment, or they may consider paying with a credit card. The interest accrued by loans and credit cards may seem unappealing, but it’s cheaper than the long-term costs of ignoring the need for treatment.
Federal and state governments provide funding for drug and alcohol rehab facilities to provide treatment to patients who have no other way to pay for it. State-funded rehab centers cover a range of services, including detox, inpatient and outpatient treatment and support services. Services differ based on state standards for addiction treatment.
The type of services offered depends on the source of the funding, and the number of sources is too great to describe all of the possible benefits, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
For example, state-funded treatment may be mandated by the criminal justice system or social services. The type of treatment covered will depend on the requirements of the agency mandating the treatment. State departments of education, health or economic development may each play a role in funding aftercare services such as vocational training. The type of training differs per location and program.
The U.S. Department of Labor’s Welfare-to-Work program funds vocational services that address barriers to finding work, including substance use disorder treatment and job training for individuals in recovery. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development funds a variety of prevention, intervention, treatment and affordable housing efforts for individuals affected by drug abuse.
Child Protective Services funds foster care for teens or adolescents who are victims of abuse or neglect. The funding may also cover substance use disorder treatment for teens or parents at risk of losing their children.
Not having enough money isn’t a good reason to defer treatment. The long-term cost of addiction is greater than the immediate cost of paying for drug rehab, and there are plenty of ways to pay for help.
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Treatment is worth the price. Many individuals enter rehab with an addiction and leave with a clearer body and mind. A report by the Drug Abuse Treatment Outcome Studies surveyed more than 700 patients five years after completing cocaine addiction treatment. The results showed:
Substance abuse treatment reduces drug and alcohol use and its associated health and social costs. Those who avoid rehab run the risk of losing their jobs, damaging relationships, homelessness or even death.
The cost of rehab should never deter an individual from treatment. Many rehab centers work with the individual to ensure they receive assistance. Our alcohol and drug treatment centers offer reasonably priced programs run by highly trained medical experts who want to see their patients improve.