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Insurance and Payment Options for Drug Rehab in the United States

Last Updated: Monday, 27 May 2024
  • What You'll Learn

DRS outlines various payment options for drug rehabs in the United States, emphasizing the financial accessibility of such programs. It discusses the cost difference between government or state-funded programs and private facilities, providing crucial information for those seeking treatment. If you want to save time and check your insurance coverage for these treatments, don’t hesitate to call one of our specialists at 1-877-208-7211.

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The average cost of drug rehab in the United States for detox, outpatient, and inpatient rehab is not always feasible to pay out of pocket. Fortunately, there are several insurance and payment options families and individuals can explore. Consider some of the following:

  • Using health insurance. The Affordable Care Act made treating substance use disorder and mental health problems an essential benefit. Health insurance plans, whether Medicaid or private, may cover all or some of your treatment. The first step is to check your insurance coverage; most drug rehab centers can help.
  • Private pay options. This could be in the form of credit cards, savings, or pooling resources as a family. Private drug rehab programs often accept credit cards, and almost every treatment center has private pay options.
  • Financing—while uncommon, some private drug rehab centers offer financing options, depending on your situation. This could include payment plans or a sliding fee scale based on income.
  • Government or state-funded treatment. Programs subsidized by the federal or state government cost less, as Medicaid covers some or all of the treatment. In addition, some programs offer free treatment for individuals meeting specific criteria. This can also include scholarships, government grants, or payment vouchers. SAMHSA provides information, services, and grants aimed at helping rehab centers offer these services.

It’s important to note that the best payment option will depend on the individual’s specific circumstances, including their financial situation and the specifics of their treatment plan.

Ask a professional

  • Will my insurance pay for my rehab?

    Maybe. Generally, the more severe the person’s addiction is, the more likely an insurance company will pay. The determining factor in getting coverage is if the insurance provider believes you need it. Insurance companies have a team of medical professionals that review all claims submitted. If they disagree that the person needs drug rehab, they don’t pay. All this being said, you must ensure the facility you want to attend accepts your insurance.

  • How do I know if a drug rehab accepts my insurance?

    The easiest way to know if your policy is accepted is to call the treatment facility and give them your insurance information. They will be able to let you know if your insurance is accepted and verify your benefits to provide you with an idea of how much coverage you will get. Another way is to ask your insurance provider for a list of treatment facilities they work with. Doing so can save a lot of wasted phone calls to facilities that don’t accept your policy.

  • Do all health insurance policies cover drug rehab treatment?

    Yes. Between the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act and the Affordable Care Act of 2010, all insurance providers must offer some form of substance abuse treatment coverage. The level of coverage varies between insurance providers and policies. Generally, more expensive private health insurance policies cover at a higher rate. It’s important to note that treatment facilities may limit the type of policies they accept. Even if your insurance plan has coverage, it may not be taken at the drug rehab you want to attend.

  • Can I purchase a policy specifically to cover treatment?

    Technically, there’s no reason someone can’t purchase a policy specifically to cover their addiction treatment. What makes it challenging is private health insurance companies have developed tactics to prevent people from quickly purchasing a policy to avoid a significant expense like addiction treatment and then dropping the policy afterward. To prevent this financial loss, they only allow people to but policies during a certain period of the year, known as “open enrollment.” Open enrollment can be a window as small as a few weeks out of the year, forcing people to wait until that time to get coverage. Other policies have “blackout periods” where major services like substance abuse treatment aren’t yet covered. Blackout periods usually last for one year, meaning the person must pay to keep the policy active for twelve continuous months before it will pay for any portion of an addiction treatment service.

  • How are Medicaid and private health insurance different?

    Medicaid is free health insurance subsidized by each state and offered to qualified residents. To obtain Medicaid coverage, a person must demonstrate financial hardship that prevents them from getting private health insurance. Private health insurance is not free. It is purchased by individuals from insurance companies or may be provided through employment.

  • Want to know more?

    The questions from Addicted.org’s “Learn from our Experts” are answered by Michael Leach, CCMA. If you need further clarification on any of the questions above or have any other questions you can contact him directly at mike@addicted.org.

Contributors To This Article



More Information

Marcel Gemme has been helping people struggling with addiction for over 19 years. He first started as an intake counselor for a drug rehabilitation center in 2000. During his 5 years as an intake counselor, he helped many addicts get the treatment they needed. He also dealt with the families and friends of those people; he saw first-hand how much strain addiction puts on a family and how it can tear relationships apart. With drug and alcohol problems constantly on the rise in the United States and Canada, he decided to use the Internet as a way to educate and help many more people in both those countries. This was 15 years ago. Since then, Marcel has built two of the largest websites in the U.S. and Canada which reach and help millions of people each year. He is an author and a leader in the field of drug and alcohol addiction. His main focus is threefold: education, prevention and rehabilitation. To this day, he still strives to be at the forefront of technology in order to help more and more people. He is a Licensed Drug and Alcohol Treatment Specialist graduate with Honours of Stratford Career Institute. Marcel has also received a certificate from Harvard for completing a course entitled The Opioid Crisis in America and a certificate from The University of Adelaide for completing a course entitled AddictionX: Managing Addiction: A Framework for Succesful Treatment.