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Paying For Drug and Alcohol Treatment

March 2, 2017

We choose to set aside money for many pleasant events during our lives. We certainly save money to buy a house. We save to pay for college or to go on our dream European vacation. There are things we don’t save for though, because we don’t feel we should have to. More and more families today are being faced with having to send a loved one to treatment for addiction. Determining how to pay for treatment can be a daunting process to navigate during this very stressful time.

The most common method is to use government assisted programs that pay for state funded treatment facilities. With the introduction of the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act, more individuals have access to treatment through private insurance. The mental health parity act aims to ensure that medical benefits and mental health benefits are equitable. Many programs accept private insurance. Most addiction treatment programs accept insurance on an either an in or out-of- network basis. In and out-of- network facilities generally require the client (insured individual) to meet their deductible before admission to treatment. By law, facilities are required to attempt to collect the deductible. There also are individuals fortunate enough to be able to pay out of pocket for their treatment. Most facilities offer some internal financing options to help alleviate the financial burden for the family. In some instances, families are forced to take out personal loans either with a bank or family. Figuring out how to pay for addiction treatment adds to the overall stress of getting treatment help for a loved one.

When choosing a treatment program, it is important to look at specific characteristics of each program. Going with the least expensive option does not necessarily mean a lower level of care and likewise, going with the more expensive option does not necessarily mean better treatment. It is important to find programs that are licensed, accredited, and have credible staff. When considering the staff a program has on their website, it is important to make sure that the treatment professionals actually work at the facility and are not just contracted to use their name or credentials.

Due to the Affordable Care Act, there has been an increase of 20 million people that have access to health insurance benefits. Individuals up to the age of 26, can be covered by their parent’s insurance policy. There are many ways to make treatment accessible. Talk to an admissions counselor about your options in order to make an informed decision. There are many support groups that can help you to find the right program from practical experience. One group, Mother’s With a Purpose focuses on helping families navigate the process of how to pay for treatment and the right questions to ask. More information about Mother’s With a Purpose can be found at their website:



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