Free Addiction Treatment or Private Addiction Treatment
Free Addiction Treatment or Private Addiction Treatment
There is nothing vague about addiction once the body has developed a tolerance for a drug, alcohol or behavior. Treatment works and it can save your life. Finding the right treatment program to address each individual’s needs can be daunting. There are many differences between treatment programs, whether they are publically funded facilities or private facilities. Before we explore some of the differences, let’s first begin with the statement that regardless of whether your treatment program is run by the state, a non-profit or for profit organization, addiction treatment works. The focus of this article is on the differences between public and private drug rehabs.
It is also important to state that paying for private addiction treatment does not guarantee quality! There are huge differences between private addiction treatment programs. It is to your benefit to explore the differences. Below is a list of various treatment sources.
- Private: Non-profit, for profit
- State or locally funded
- Low cost rehabs
- Free rehabs or charity rehabs
In a quality alcohol and drug rehab, both a medical detox and medically based inpatient addiction treatment program will be offered. In reality, most addiction treatment programs do not have a medically based detox unit or a medically based addiction treatment program. Treatment may be provided but the type of treatment and the comprehensiveness of the program is of great significance.
All treatment facilities do not necessarily utilize the thirty plus years of clinical and medical addiction research, the proven best practices, 12 Step principles, or a range of therapeutic modalities as part of the treatment protocol.
For this reason, a person who needs detox will be placed on a waiting list for a publically run medical detox and then after completing detox, the addict will be placed on another waiting list for a publically funded inpatient drug or alcohol treatment program.
Despite research to the contrary, many people including claims managers at insurance companies, believe that outpatient detox followed by outpatient drug or alcohol treatment will produce the same results as intensive inpatient addiction treatment. Indeed, nothing could be further from the truth.
Despite research to the contrary, many people including claims managers at insurance companies, believe that outpatient detox followed by outpatient drug or alcohol treatment will produce the same results as intensive inpatient addiction treatment. Indeed, nothing could be further from the truth. Intensive inpatient treatment provides addicts with a safe, secure, quiet environment in which to confront personal issues away from the pressures of work, family, friends, outside obligations and environmental distractions.
After completing detox, the alcoholic or drug addict may have to wait weeks or months before being able to enter a publically funded facility. Waiting lists can be long. Research also indicates that the longer the break between detox and alcohol or drug treatment, the greater the risk of returning to drugs and alcohol—a relapse. Detox is not a substitute for addiction treatment. Detox is the first step in recovery. It is a process through which the body is cleansed of drug and alcohol toxins. The underlying reasons for the substance abuse remain intact and will re-exert pressure on the addict to use again.
While many state or locally funded treatment programs are quality programs, there are core differences that exist between the public realm and the private realm of treatment:
- Waiting lists – Generally there are long waiting lists to get into publically funded alcohol and drug detox followed by another waiting list to get into state or locally funded alcohol or drug rehab.
- Size of group sessions – One obvious difference between publically funded and private facilities is the number of people in each group therapy session. Demand for treatment is great. Beds are at a premium and these facilities have to take the maximum number of people possible. Therefore, each aspect of treatment will be provided to large groups of addicts. For example, in a quality addiction rehab there may be 8-10 people per group. In public facilities there can be as many as 20 people.
- Level of care – While some publically funded addiction treatment programs may have skilled substance abuse counselors and therapists, often times the number of staff holding higher level degrees and expertise in addiction medicine are limited. The number of Masters level therapists at a quality private treatment program or the number of physicians with a certification in addiction medicine will be higher.
- Privacy – Privacy is a big issue in both publically funded treatment programs and private rehabs.
- Accommodations – Public alcohol and drug rehabs may have rooms that hold 4-6 individuals sleeping in bunk beds. Private facilities generally have semi-private rooms (2 people per room).
- Family programs – Therapy for the family is a crucial element of treatment. The ability to offer extensive family therapy at a publically funded addiction treatment program may not be possible due to budgetary constraints, It should be noted that family therapy programs differ greatly even in private facilities.
- Patient motivation and population – This aspect of treatment may be significant for some. The general population of publically funded rehabs tends to be court order patients as well as homeless individuals. The level of personal commitment to treatment differs when one goes to treatment to get clean and sober to avoid jail or cold weather rather than desperately seeking help because the addict has asked for help. A person who is paying for treatment may be more motivated due to the investment that he or she is making in treatment.
- Dual Diagnosis – When a person suffers from a mental health disorder in combination with a substance abuse problem (drugs or alcohol), then dual diagnosis treatment is needed. Many treatment programs are not able to handle dual diagnosis. There are few true dual diagnosis treatment programs nationally, whether they are public or private treatment programs.
So, what do you do if you cannot afford to pay for treatment, whether it is a private or non profit program? There are a number of resources that may provide funds to attend treatment.
Most private or non private alcohol and drug rehabs will have scholarship programs allowing a certain number of individuals to seek treatment free of charge. A treatment program admission’s officer will be able to discuss this possibility on a case by case basis.
Sometimes, insurance will cover a part of the cost of private addiction treatment. The rest of the funding will be the patient’s responsibility. There are several things that one can do to raise money to pay for part or all of the treatment. While these may sound harsh, the value of quality treatment cannot be understated or underestimated.
Ways to Finance Addiction Treatment
- Medical Insurance
- Speak with family members to help finance the treatment stay
- Take some money from your 401K
EAP (Employee Assistance Programs, and FMLA)
- Health Savings Account
- Take a private loan from your employer
- Sell stock or life insurance, take a loan against whole life insurance policy
- Take a home equity loan
- Take a loan for substance abuse treatment (there are companies that do lend for treatment)
- Sell your car (you should not be driving drugged or drunk anyway).
Ultimately, treatment, whether public or private, will work if you are ready to do the work of recovery. The quality of treatment varies greatly from program to program, but the core of any program is the addict’s willingness to be honest, seek help, and do the things recommended once treatment has be completed.
Following an individualized aftercare plan, attending AA or NA meetings and finding a strong recovery support network will help build a solid foundation for recovery to continue.