How Much Does Drug Rehab Cost?

Costs and Payment Options for Drug Treatment

Much like other forms of medical care, you may be concerned about the cost of treatment.

When a person reaches the point of seeking treatment for their substance abuse issue, they’ll have to weigh the monetary costs of that treatment against the level of care they’re looking for.
In turn, one of the largest considerations for potential drug treatment patients is just how much it’s going to cost them. While the individual concerns on this subject are valid, there’s no question that drug treatment is well worth the cost in a grander sense.

That is to say, every dollar invested in addiction treatment translates to a savings of between $4 and $7 for the public through the reduction of things like crime and theft. All of this speaks to the general importance of drug treatment, but the question of personal cost remains. 

While there’s no hard and fast rule about the cost of drug treatment, some general ranges exist to give users an idea of the price tag they can expect. 

The Overall Range in Price

Anyone familiar with drug treatment knows that there are many different types and levels of treatment that exist in the United States. Obviously, that means that there’s a large discrepancy in treatment cost depending on factors like the level of care and the region.

That said, the range of cost for treatment has to be broken down by treatment type and duration. A person who simply needs a place to detox for a few days can expect to pay somewhere between $300 and $800 a day. While this might sound steep, it pales in comparison to the cost of continuing the habit over time.

Many users who don’t have insurance and can’t afford to pay for longer stints of care will elect to detox in a controlled environment as it prevents them from relapsing when symptoms like nausea and fever set in. For those who need more comprehensive treatment, different options for outpatient and inpatient care exist.

Given the serious variation in treatments that fall into these two categories, it’s unsurprising that such a massive range of costs exist for them. For example, outpatient drug treatment can range from practically free to costing upwards of $10,000 for a complete program. Assuredly, not all treatment programs are created equally, and high-quality care often comes at a high price.

Likewise, inpatient programs vary greatly in cost. The basic stint for one of these treatments runs 30 days; inpatient care can range from around $2,000 to $25,000 for the month. Inpatient treatment is obviously the most intensive, but even within this category there lies a fair amount of wiggle room in terms of actual programming.

In addition to physical cravings, someone with an addiction issue will also spend a tremendous amount of time thinking about their drug of choice. These thoughts become a compulsion and impossible to control, which leads to drug-seeking behavior that can sometimes be criminal.

Feelings of depression, sadness, anxiety, despair, and the like are often at the root of substance abuse. The substance might temporarily mask these feelings, but they return once the high wears off, creating a vicious circle of drug abuse.

Taking a substance will temporarily stop the cravings and compulsion for it, but soon the same feelings return. In time, it takes more and more of the same substance to achieve the same effect it once had.

People addicted to drugs and alcohol may feel like they have no control over their drug use. Refraining from using or stopping seems to be an impossibility for them. The substance controls them, rather than the other way around.

Someone addicted to drugs or alcohol will continue to seek them out even if their addiction has made them lose friends, family, spouses, and jobs. Drug-seeking behavior can even lead to diseases such as hepatitis and HIV/AIDS.

Putting The Price in Perspective

To outsiders, these figures of thousands of dollars for drug treatment might seem rather expensive. To be sure, receiving treatment requires a lump-sum expenditure, but it’s certainly less expensive than what most addicts dedicate to their substance of choice.

For example, someone with a serious cocaine addiction might spend $500 on the substance every single day. Things like alcohol and prescription opioids, though less expensive, can still cost addicts between $50 and $75 every day.

Considering the fact that most addicts spend years hooked on their preferred substances, it doesn’t take much calculating to realize that the cost of treatment, even high-end treatment, is a bargain in the long run.

Even so, most people don’t have the cash on hand to dedicate to receiving drug treatment. Fortunately, there are payment options like insurance that help soften the financial blow, but they’ll take a bit of digging to fully understand.

If you are considering treatment for yourself or a loved one, call us today.

Defraying Treatment Cost with Insurance

Since 2008, insurance providers have been required by law to cover substance abuse treatment. This means that, so long as a person has current health insurance, there is a facility somewhere that will accept that insurance and provide them with drug treatment.

Naturally, which facilities accept which insurance takes a bit of research. The bad news is that excellent treatment programs might only be in-network for a few insurance providers; the good news is that these facilities are generally still willing to work with patients on an out of network basis, getting them reimbursed for as much of the cost as possible.

To be clear, some facilities operate under a private pay policy. This means that they strictly accept direct payment rather than dealing with insurance companies; this practice is not all that uncommon for mental health professionals, and in turn, some drug treatment facilities have followed suit.

Additionally, some users opt to pay for treatment directly in order to protect their privacy. This is often the case if a young person is insured through their parents’ policies and they’re concerned about an explanation of benefits being sent out if their parents are unaware of their addiction.

In any case, it isn’t hard to find a treatment program that accepts a wide range of insurance providers; it might take a bit more work to find a desirable facility in-network, but the savings are well worth the effort.

Accounting for The Wide Variation in Treatment Cost

Someone who goes out to dinner in Des Moines, Iowa is going to pay far less than someone who goes out to eat a comparable dinner in New York City.

These regional differences play a huge role in the cost of drug treatment, too, but there are other factors that make an even bigger difference in the price of a program.

Namely, the level of care accounts for the largest discrepancy in cost. An inpatient program requires round the clock care; an intensive outpatient program requires less constant attention; outpatient and aftercare treatment requires less work still.

None of this is to say that practitioners completing outpatient and aftercare programs aren’t working incredibly hard, it is just to say that more comprehensive programs need more thorough attention simply by virtue of the time commitment. Details like meals and housing can rack up costs quickly; facilities have to pass that cost on to patients in some measure.

Additionally, the specific facets of a program can impact the cost. Most inpatient treatments feature frequent therapy sessions, often in groups and individually to help users work out the root of their addictions. The more that an outpatient treatment focuses on therapeutic methods, which require the presence of a healthcare professional, the more they are likely to cost, too.

Still, participants in outpatient drug treatment go home every night, sleep in their own beds, and cook their own meals. They aren’t monitored all the time, so these types of programs are less expensive for facilities to run, and in turn, less expensive for users to attend.

At the end of the day, inpatient care is going to be the most expensive as a general rule, but truly high-quality outpatient care can get rather pricey as well; luckily, insurance is often a viable payment option. The most important thing for anyone seeking drug treatment to think about is whether a program genuinely resonates with them, and feels like the right place to start their recovery.

With four different levels of care, Nexus Recovery is committed to helping people struggling with addiction, and we gladly accept a wide range of insurance policies. Contact us today so we can verify your insurance benefits and help you on the road to recovery.

If you or a loved one are suffering from alcohol or drug addiction, we’re here to help. Contact us today and speak with one of our trusted recovery advisors.

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