When a person needs help overcoming an addiction to drugs or alcohol, the focus should be on how to get them the necessary treatment as soon as possible. Unfortunately, for many, concerns over how they are going to pay for a recovery program often overshadows their decision to seek help. What is the cost of treatment? Does insurance cover drug treatment? What assistance is available to afford a recovery program? Read on for answers to these important questions.
Insurance is Required to Cover Addiction Treatment
If you have some type of health insurance, you should be at least partially covered for substance abuse treatment.
Thanks to the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act (MHPAEA) of 2008, insurance companies are required by law to offer the “same level of benefits for mental and/or substance use treatment and services that they do for medical and surgical care” per the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). If an insurance policy denies coverage for drug treatment, SAMHSA offers resources to help.
Additionally, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) classified substance use disorder and addiction treatments as essential benefits, making it easier for you to get the help you need covered by your existing health insurance policy.
The Cost of Treatment
However, there are some important stipulations that you should be aware of regarding the coverage that you may be eligible for. For one thing, you might not be able to go to any facility you want to for treatment. Different treatment centers will have different fees. While no one should let cost deter them from seeking help, it is vital that anyone seeking drug or alcohol treatment ask questions to determine what their financial responsibility will be.
The first step is to find out which insurance plans a particular program accepts. Some treatment programs may be in-network with a particular insurance plan, others may be out-of-network, and some may not work with that insurance plan at all.
Next, you will need to determine if you have a deductible that must be met before your insurance plan provides coverage. This can add to the cost of treatment but shouldn’t be so prohibitive that you can’t attend treatment at all.
Another cost to consider is whether your insurance coverage has a coinsurance policy. This means that the plan requires the patient to pay a portion of the cost. For instance, if the coinsurance amount is 30%, the patient would be responsible for $300 of a $1,000 charge.
In some cases, insurance policies will actually offer full coverage for addiction treatment. In this case, you won’t have to pay anything at all for your rehab treatment.
Finally, some insurance plans offer out-of-network coverage, but these may cover a smaller amount of the cost, leaving you with a larger bill.
Financial Assistance If You Don’t Have Insurance Coverage
How can someone without insurance coverage pay for a recovery program?
Don’t assume that there’s nothing you can do to acquire treatment if you don’t have any obvious insurance coverage available to you. You may have some options.
For one thing, you may be able to discuss your substance abuse issue with your employer. Some employers offer added coverage to employees for substance abuse issues. You might feel concerned about bringing up your substance abuse issues with your employer. However, you should consider discussing these issues with a human resources staff member of your company. Human resources professionals are generally trained to be discreet when discussing issues like substance abuse with employees.
You also can discuss your struggle to pay for treatment with the rehab facility you are interested in going to for treatment.
Many facilities offer a sliding payment scale for individuals who are in financial distress. Make sure to ask if this might be an option for you. Some nonprofit organizations also offer rehab scholarships which, much like a college scholarship, help people afford the cost of rehab.
Some rehab facilities also accept Medicaid as well as private insurance. Additionally, states may have funding available to help pay for treatment for those who can’t afford it. SAMHSA has a guide to these state-level options.
Rehab facilities can also provide information on how individual patients can potentially finance treatment. They may be able to offer a referral to public assistance programs that will cover the treatment. They might also be able to put together a payment plan solution that can make treatment more affordable for individual patients.
Important Things to Remember About Addiction Treatment
Many patients feel overwhelmed at first when they’re trying to figure out what rehab treatment they need and how they will pay for it. However, a lot of patients overlook some significant factors that underline how important treatment is and how relatively affordable treatment can be.
Substance abuse often costs more than treatment
Patients who are overwhelmed by treatment costs often aren’t thinking enough about how much substance abuse itself is costing them. When you’re struggling with addiction, you’re probably paying a lot on a daily basis to purchase alcohol and/or drugs.
Of course, these aren’t the only costs of substance abuse. Substance abuse can also cost you in legal fees if you run afoul of the law as the result of your addiction. Addiction can also cost you lost income if you’re unable to hold down a job or be as productive at work as you could otherwise be.
Deciding Between Inpatient and Outpatient Rehab
One of the most important decisions you’re going to have to make is whether to undergo inpatient or outpatient rehab. Outpatient rehab is significantly less expensive than inpatient rehab. Inpatient rehab costs more because it requires you to live temporarily at the rehab facility. Therefore, you can save money by opting for outpatient rehab.
At the same time, inpatient rehab is generally more successful and complete than outpatient rehab. If your addiction is particularly severe and you want to kick it once and for all, it’s probably worthwhile for you to invest in inpatient rehab.
Getting Started with Rehab
Don’t procrastinate about learning more about substance abuse treatment and insurance coverage for the costs of such treatment. The sooner you get started with pursuing substance abuse treatment, the sooner you can get your life back on track personally, professionally, and financially.
Soba Recovery offers a one-stop-solution for those seeking treatment for substance abuse. With addiction treatment centers in Arizona and Texas, our facilities and program allow your recovery to thrive. Contact us today to speak to one of our trained treatment professionals about how to get started on the road to recovery. And don’t forget: if finances are a concern for you, talk to us about your payment options.