Paying for a Second Chance
The ability to pay is one of the most common roadblocks to quality substance abuse treatment. Despite the fact that there are approximately 23 million Americans that meet the established criteria for addiction and chemical dependency, only about three million actually get the care they need. Even when they overcome their fear and denial, and endeavor to get help, many users find themselves having to contend with long waiting lists, substandard levels of care and other miscellaneous regulatory obstacles. While there are more and more treatment resources emerging on a regular basis, the reality is that the demand for care continues to outpace supply, and this scarcity is one of the main drivers hefty prices.
Help Is Incrementally on the Way
It’s not a secret that quality addiction care can be expensive, and that many users and families don’t have cash readily on hand to finance their recoveries themselves. The good news is that there are more resources than ever for patients who are concerned about paying for drug and alcohol addiction treatment. Recent healthcare legislation has significantly increased access by mandating that insurance providers cover substance abuse and mental health treatment in most situations. Drug and alcohol addiction is a bona fide medical disease; and the insurance landscape is now recognizing it as such. Even if your carrier only covers half or part of your treatment, it’s still a significant decrease from the price tags of yesteryear.
Many addiction care organizations also offer what are called “scholarships” to those who desperately need treatment but can’t afford it. Additionally doctors are being given more latitude in prescribing long-term maintenance drugs, eliminating the need for costly and time-consuming stays at specialized clinics.
It May Be Hard, But It’s Not Impossible
At the end of the day, the most important investment we can make is an investment in our health and future. For many of us, our substance abuse will eventually get to a point at which treatment will supersede all other obligations. We have to do the necessary work to get ourselves back on track and thrive in recovery. If you or a loved one needs immediate treatment for drug or alcohol addiction, it’s important to remember that you do have options. You can reach out to your state substance abuse and mental health agency or talk to a referral organization to guide you toward quality treatment in your community.