How to Pay for Addiction Treatment

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Finding a way to pay for addiction treatment can be difficult for people looking to start their journey to recovery. With residential rehabs costing around $20,000 for 30-day programs and $60,000 for 60-to-90 day programs, treatment may seem like an impossible option for those seeking help for an addiction to drugs or alcohol. Although outpatient drug treatment programs–where clients remain at home and attend daily sessions–are cheaper than inpatient or residential programs, costs can still range from $5,000 to $10,000.

For those who are new to treatment or looking for ways to pay for an outpatient or inpatient program, insurance coverage, Medicaid or Medicare, and the Affordable Care Act are all options that provide coverage for rehab. Don’t let the cost of treatment deter you from getting the help you need.

For more options about treatment costs and coverage, call our 24-7 call center at 855-960-5341. Our addiction specialists are standing by for your call so they can help you choose the best option for recovery.

Private Insurance Coverage for Treatment

How to pay for addiction treatmentMany private insurance companies provide medical coverage for addiction treatment. Depending on the individual’s health insurance plan, the client will be eligible for a certain percentage of coverage. For example: Insurance companies offer different types of plans, including a Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) plan, a Preferred Provider Organization (PPO), and an Exclusive Provider Organization plan (EPO). Within each plan, an annual deductible and co-payments for doctor visits are often required, depending on medical expenses and your primary care provider.

According to Forbes, America’s biggest health insurance providers include United Healthcare, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Aetna, Cigna, and Humana. For more information about coverage for drug rehab, contact the insurance provider for specific details about your network coverage and which type of treatment you are eligible for.

Here are specific details about some of the insurance company’s coverage for outpatient care or inpatient drug rehab.

UnitedHealthcare: United covers detoxification, alcohol and drug treatment when Medicare coverage criteria are met. Therefore, if the treatment services are covered by Medicare, then it can also be covered by United. So, United may cover a seven-day detox program for an acute addiction, and outpatient care or inpatient care at a psychiatric hospital for 190 days, but not residential treatment since it’s not usually covered by Medicare. Residential treatment is a 45-90 day program where clients live at the facility they are being treated at whereas outpatient services are shorter and don’t provide a residence. Check out UnitedHealthcare’s guidelines for addiction treatment eligibility and coverage.

Blue Cross Blue Shield: Anthem Blue Cross behavioral health coverage provides both mental health and substance abuse treatment at contracted facilities. For more information about its substance abuse coverage and eligibility, click here.

Aetna: Aetna’s behavioral health program not only provides financial support for substance abuse, but it also offers an Employee Assistance Program (EAP). Individuals enrolled in this program gain the flexibility of keeping their job while seeking substance abuse treatment. For more information about Aetna’s behavioral health program and coverage, visit

Cigna: Depending on your family or individual plan, Cigna provides coverage for outpatient and inpatient treatment services. Cigna’s website provides a wide range of treatment centers located all over the US for its clients. These treatment centers are tailored to meet specific needs such as adolescent teen rehab, dual diagnosis, and LGBTQ+ rehabs. Check out the locator here.

Humana: Humana provides drug and alcohol treatment coverage for in-network facilities, which are facilities that have an agreement with the provider to provide coverage at a certain cost. To check which facilities are in your network, call your provider for more information.

Affordable Care Act (Obamacare)

The Affordable Care Act, informally known as Obamacare, provides subsidies to allow people to purchase insurance on the individual market. The law also enacted several health care reforms that broadened access to insurance. For example, people will pre-existing conditions can not be denied coverage.

Non-profit organizations, Obamacare, and FMLA can be use for drug treatment coverageEvery year, during open enrollment, people can shop for affordable insurance within or outside of the health insurance marketplace, and qualify for Medicaid. Deductible, co-payments, and other out-of-pocket costs depend on the individual or family’s salary.

Generally, mental health services and addiction treatment are covered under the Affordable Care Act. Substance abuse treatment falls under the 10 essential health benefits covered by the ACA. If you are insured on the individual market, check with your healthcare provider to get more information about out-of-pocket fees, and in-network treatment services. Find more information about mental health and substance abuse services and eligibility here.

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA)

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) provides certain employees with up to 12 protected weeks of leave a year for a family or medical emergency. During this time, employers are required to keep health benefits as if the employee is still working, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

FMLA coverage applies to the following:
· The birth of a baby and to care for a newborn baby
· To care for a sick family member
· Any period of treatment at an inpatient clinic, hospital, hospice, or residential care
· Any absences to receive multiple treatments by, or on referral, a healthcare provider.

Although health benefits are maintained for employees protected by FMLA, some jobs may not pay an employee during their leave. If you are eligible for FMLA coverage to balance your job and personal life while getting addiction treatment, read more about the coverage here.

Alternative Ways to Pay for Drug Rehab

SAMHSA Grants: SAMHSA has many funding opportunities for those struggling to pay for drug rehab. The Tribal Action Plan (TAP) gives federally recognized tribes the right to protect their community against drug and alcohol abuse. For help applying for SAMHSA grants, visit

Sliding scale fees: Many treatment centers offer payment plans based on the client’s income. When visiting a local treatment facility, ask about affordable payment plans that fit into your budget.

Nonprofit treatment programs: The Salvation Army is a faith-based program located in all major US cities. The program allows clients to work for the Salvation Army for six months while they are receiving treatment. During that time, clients are required to stay at least six months in the recovery program to receive therapy and educational training. Currently, the Salvation Army has about 200 drug treatment programs in the US.

The Cost of Drug Addiction in the United States

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There is no doubt that drug addiction remains a major issue in this country. Not only is it a major health and policy issue, drug addiction has significant impacts on our economic bottom line. According to information from the National Institute on Drug Abuse, substance abuse costs our nation more than $484 billion per year. When you compare that to the total costs due to diseases such as diabetes (approximately $131.7 billion yearly) and cancer (approximately $171.6 billion annually), the magnitude of America’s drug addiction problem is readily apparent.

The costs of drug addiction can be seen both in terms of healthcare and work productivity. For example, the following statistics outline the costs of drug addiction in health care:

  • The economic burden of addiction in the United States is twice that of any other disease affecting the brain, including Alzheimer’s.
  • Addiction is a serious driver of health care costs, estimated at $215 billion annually.
  • Individuals with addiction have higher rates of other chronic physical illness, mental health problems, and infectious disease.
  • Almost half of all emergency room visits for trauma and/or injury are alcohol related.
  • Individuals with addiction problems use four times as many hospital days as non-drinkers.
  • 35% of emergency room patients with an occupational injury are problem drinkers.
  • Heavy drinking contributes to illness in each of the top three causes of death: heart disease, cancer, and stroke. One in 14 hospital stays involves addiction.
  • 14% of patients admitted to hospitals have addiction problems.

In regards to the cost of drug addiction in the workplace, information from the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence states that drug addiction costs employers $81 billion annually. It is also reported that 70 percent estimated 14.8 million Americans who use illegal drugs are employed. Additionally, workers who report having three or more jobs in the previous five years are about twice as likely to be current or past year users of illegal drugs as those who have had two or fewer jobs.

The costs of drug addiction in the United States can be felt in other areas as well. According to information provided by Face It Together, state governments spend just under $3 billion yearly for addiction-related problems. It has also been reported that property destruction and other costs of crime total $70 billion annually.

The Cost of Drug Treatment in The United States

prescription drugs

The economic toll of drug addiction In the United States has far-reaching implications. While you may not come face to face with addiction on a personal level, the overall cost due to the consequences of drug addiction trickle down and can be felt in regards to paying more for services and higher taxes. Given the high cost of addiction, what about drug treatment? We know that undergoing and successfully completing drug treatment at a quality rehab will give addicts the best chance at long-term recovery. Will the cost of attending drug treatment help the addict and society at large in the long run?

When it comes to the cost of drug treatment, it depends on what type of treatment facility best suits your needs. While many people are familiar with inpatient and outpatient drug treatment, there are different settings in which these treatment options are offered. For example, there are holistic treatment centers, faith-based treatment centers, Christian treatment centers and luxury treatment centers just to name a few. Since each addict has a different history, background, and specific needs when it comes to treatment, finding the right treatment setting can mean the difference between long-term recovery and continuing the downward spiral of addiction.

The average price for a drug rehab for a 28-day program is $25,166 which includes on-site medical detoxification services. Drug treatment centers that don’t offer detox will run on average of $10,000 cheaper, However, given the fact that many drugs can produce withdrawal symptoms that are extremely painful, uncomfortable and can be potentially life-threatening, detoxification is something that should not be omitted. If you are looking at a luxury drug rehab, the cost can run even higher–upwards to $100,000. While the cost of treatment may turn you away from getting the help you need, there are a couple of things you need to know.

Because of provisions of the Affordable Healthcare Act, drug treatment is considered an essential health care service and is either fully covered or at least partially covered under most insurance plans. In the event that you are underinsured or uninsured, many drug treatment centers may offer alternative payment arrangements, offer a sliding fee scale for their services, or may offer some sort of scholarship or funding so you can get the help you need. If you are unsure if your insurance will cover the cost of treatment, many rehabs will be happy to go over your insurance to tell you what is and isn’t covered.

Seeking Help for Addiction

Paying for rehab services doesn’t have to be the deciding factor when seeking help from substance abuse. With health insurance, federal and state-funded grants, and nonprofit drug rehab programs, anyone can have the opportunity they need to take back control of their life. For more information about treatment, insurance coverage, and payment plans, contact us today.



Carlos Rivera
Content Marketing Manager

Carlos Rivera is the content marketing manager at Delphi Behavioral Health Group. Before working for Delphi, he managed the digital marketing for an immigration law firm. Aside from building content for businesses, Carlos spends his time writing fiction, working on his podcast, and spending time with his beautiful wife. He is also working toward his master’s degree in digital marketing at the University of Florida.

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