Is Addiction Treatment Worth The Cost?
In This Article
How Much Is Addiction Treatment? (Average Costs)
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- Outpatient rehab programs typically cost about $1,000 to $1,500
- Other estimates show costs ranging from $0 to $10,000
- Inpatient rehab, which is far more comprehensive, costs about $6,000 to $10,000 for 30 days
- Other estimates show inpatient treatment can cost between $2,000 and $25,000 for 30 days
- Medically-assisted opioid treatment programs cost between $5,900 and $14,000 per year
The Cost of Addiction
Addiction is costly for the whole nation. There are many expenses involved, including:
- Medical bills (short-term and long-term)
- Lawyer and court fees
- Prevention programs
- Addiction treatment centers
A 2013 study from the National Institute on Drug Abuses (NIDA) suggested that the total costs of opioid use disorders and overdoses in the U.S. were $78 billion.
Of that, only 3.6 percent were for treatment.
Treatment programs are a financial investment, but they are proven to reduce the overall cost of addiction.
Studies have shown that every $1 invested in treatment has a return on investment (ROI) of $4 to $7.
How To Pay For Treatment
If you have health insurance, contact your provider. Many insurance companies cover certain treatment programs or at least part of them.
Unfortunately, addiction treatment can still be too expensive even with partial insurance coverage.
Many people simply can't afford an appropriate treatment program. Sometimes they can only afford outpatient treatment when an inpatient program would be more effective.
In some cases, government programs can help pay for addiction treatment.
- Tricare for military veterans
- Medicare for individuals 65 and older or 65 and under with a severe disability
- Medicaid for individuals with a low income
Public assistance programs are also available to help pay for substance abuse treatment.
If you have questions about paying for treatment, you can call:
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration's (SAMHSA’s) National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357)
- The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) at 301-443-1124.
Other ways to pay for treatment include:
- Credit cards
- Bank loans
- Friends and family
Finally, some treatment programs offer scholarships that contribute to a portion of care. If you are evaluating treatment programs, make sure you ask about payment options.
Factors That Influence the Cost of Addiction Treatment
The cost of addiction treatment varies based on several factors.
The first is the addiction being treated. Because different addictions require different treatment methods, they tend to vary in cost.
Detoxification periods vary in length depending on the substance. Therapeutic methods also change according to the type of addiction.
If you have co-occurring conditions, this may also affect the overall cost.
Other factors affecting treatment cost include:
- Length of stay in the facility
- Location of the facility (some areas are just inherently more expensive than others)
- Size of the facility
- The extensiveness of detox required before treatment can begin
- Level of amenities
Is Treatment Worth Its High Cost?
Yes. Addiction treatment is beneficial in so many ways. Just talk with anyone who has achieved long-term sobriety.
Becoming sober can increase your physical, mental, and spiritual health. It can help you repair and maintain relationships with your loved ones.
Treatment has undeniable positive effects on you and your family's life. It also costs less than addiction.
Medical bills, job loss, legal fees, plus the cost of drugs are all financial costs. It can also cost you your health and earning potential.
Even though addiction treatment is expensive, it's a good investment for you, your family, and your loved ones.
Call to find out how much your insurance will cover
- National Institute on Drug Abuse. “How Much Does Opioid Treatment Cost?” Drugabuse.Gov, 2019, www.drugabuse.gov/publications/research-reports/medications-to-treat-opioid-addiction/how-much-does-opioid-treatment-cost.
- National Institute on Drug Abuse. “Is Drug Addiction Treatment Worth Its Cost?” Drugabuse.Gov, 2018, www.drugabuse.gov/publications/principles-drug-addiction-treatment-research-based-guide-third-edition/frequently-asked-questions/drug-addiction-treatment-worth-its-cost.
- Thomas, Deborah. “The Walker Center.” The Walker Center, 24 Jan. 2017, www.thewalkercenter.org/blog-posts/making-help-affordable-ways-to-pay-for-addiction-treatment. Accessed 8 Apr. 2020.
- Escudero, Nicki. “How to Pay for Addiction Treatment.” The Simple Dollar, TheSimpleDollar.com, 18 Oct. 2019, www.thesimpledollar.com/financial-wellness/how-to-pay-for-addiction-treatment/. Accessed 8 Apr. 2020.