The cost of rehab varies greatly depending on many factors, including treatment setting and type, amenities and features offered, location, funding, insurance accepted, and financing options. If you are concerned about the cost of rehab, there are some affordable and even free rehab options available through state-funded treatment programs. However, free rehabs tend to have long waiting lists—if you’re having trouble getting into one, you can always apply for a rehab scholarship to cover the cost of rehab. Moreover, most rehab centers accept insurance or offer sliding scale costs and payment plans based on your income. Just make sure you check with the rehab you’re considering before enrolling.
In this article:
Breaking Down the Cost of Rehab
The cost of drug and alcohol rehab will depend on a few different variables, like how long you are there and what level of treatment you need. The range of drug and alcohol rehab costs can be broad, so the best way to know exactly what your treatment costs will be is to talk with the rehab center directly.
Inpatient Rehab Costs
Inpatient and residential programs provide 24-hour care with medical and mental health professionals available to respond to your needs. The setting of inpatient rehab varies from a hospital environment to luxury rehab centers. What type of inpatient rehab you attend will determine the cost range.
Long-term inpatient treatment will often last between six and 12 months and focuses on your resocialization into your community. Short-term inpatient programs are typically three– to six-week stays and often require follow-up outpatient care after leaving the inpatient program.1
Some of the factors that affect the price of an inpatient program include:
- Where your rehab center is located
- What level of care they provide
- How many staff members they employ, and how large the center is
- What sort of amenities they offer, such as private rooms, resort-style comfort, and high-quality food
- What the staff to patient ratios are
- Whether they offer individualized or specialized treatment plans
The costs for inpatient care vary significantly from $5,000 on the lower end all the way up to $80,000 on the higher end.
These numbers may feel overwhelming or deter you from looking into affordable rehab centers. However, you have several options when looking for affordable care.
How Much Does Rehab Cost?: Outpatient Rehab Prices
In contrast to an inpatient program, outpatient rehab does not include overnight stays. In outpatient rehab, you will attend appointments throughout the week but return to your home between treatments. Outpatient treatment is often cheaper than inpatient since you are not paying for the extra time spent at the rehab facility.
The costs for three months of outpatient care range from the low end of $1,400 to the higher end at around $10,000, depending on the rehab center you choose and how long your treatment lasts.
Partial Hospitalization Program
A partial hospitalization program is more intense than a standard outpatient program. This treatment program is similar to inpatient in the frequency and duration of appointments throughout the week, but it still allows you to return to your home at the end of the day.
Partial hospitalization costs range from $1,400 to $10,000 depending on the rehab center, how long you are in treatment, and your insurance coverage.
Intensive Outpatient Treatment
Intensive outpatient (IOP) treatment offers care that is more intense than standard outpatient but less intense than partial hospitalization. Typically, IOP treatment provides a minimum of nine hours of treatment per week, but it can sometimes offer more if needed. Sometimes the duration of appointments and counseling sessions in IOP may be longer than inpatient sessions since you are not at the facility for as much time when you are in outpatient.2
Intensive outpatient treatment costs range from $1,400 to $10,000 depending on the rehab center, how long you are in treatment, and your insurance coverage.
Continuing care refers to the treatment you receive after leaving a rehab program. Your treatment team will put together a continuing care plan based on your specific needs, but it often involves regular primary care follow-up appointments, and specialty appointments related to substance use and psychiatric treatment as needed.3
The costs of this will vary based on how often you have follow-up appointments and where you go for these treatments. A recent study found that the average monthly cost for continuing care was around $221.43 per month for those receiving primary care, substance use disorder treatment, and psychiatric care.3
Does Insurance Cover Rehab?
You will find that many types of insurance cover the cost of addiction treatment and rehab. In the past few years, the Affordable Care Act made it mandatory for insurance policies issued under the state health exchanges and through Medicaid programs under the ACA expansion to provide coverage for addiction treatment.4
Some insurance options are listed below:
- Private insurance policies will often cover at least a portion of rehab costs.
- Military insurance is provided by TRICARE and covers most inpatient and outpatient rehab services.
- Medicaid is a federal program providing health coverage, including for substance abuse, to eligible groups such as low-income families, qualified pregnant women and children, and individuals receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI).
- Medicare offers healthcare, including addiction treatment, to Americans who are 65 or older and to young people with disabilities.
You can visit your insurance carrier’s website or call the phone number listed on the back of your insurance card to find out what services your policy covers. You can also contact 800-662-4357 to speak to a specialist who will help you find a rehab that accepts your insurance.
Financing Options for Rehab
In 2018, a study found that one in three people who needed detox treatment did not receive it because of a lack of funds or health insurance to pay for the cost of treatment.1 Research also shows that those without health insurance have higher rates of substance use disorders than individuals who have health insurance, with about 12% meeting the criteria for a substance use disorder.5
However, your financial situation should not determine whether or not you receive the care you need. There are many options to help you finance the cost of addiction treatment.
Sliding Scale Fees
Many rehab centers will offer sliding scale fees to bring costs lower for those who need it. A sliding scale refers to a system where your income and family size determine your costs. Each center will have its own specific formula for deciding the sliding scale costs. Ask your rehab center if they offer sliding scale prices and provide the information requested in order to find out what discounts you qualify for.
Treatment centers are often willing to offer payment plans if you cannot afford the upfront cost of rehab. Payment plans allow you to pay a monthly fee that you can afford toward your treatment. The rehab center staff will talk to you about what sort of payment plans they offer.
Seeking out a state-funded rehab program can help keep your rehab costs down as these programs are often able to offer low-cost or even free treatment.
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has a Directory of Single State Agencies (SSA) for Substance Abuse Services, where you can find a list of state-funded rehab centers.6 These are centers that offer rehab services at no cost to you. They receive funding from the government in order to provide free treatment.
If you cannot reasonably afford the cost of addiction treatment, you can apply for a rehab scholarship to cover the cost. These are typically offered by individual rehab facilities, as well as third-party organizations, such as 10,000 Beds. You will need to contact the rehab center directly to learn if they offer any type of scholarships.
You can search for medical loans online. Several companies offer loans for those who need financial assistance, and many do not require a good credit score to be approved. Interest rates and loan limits can vary depending on many factors.
Healthcare Credit Cards
You may be able to get certain credit cards made explicitly for financing medical care. You can apply for these cards the same way you do for other credit cards, but these cards cannot be used anywhere like other cards. Each credit card will have a list of approved places and services the card can be used for, so you will need to confirm that the credit card you get can be used for rehab services.
You can choose from many options to find assistance with rehab treatment costs. If you or someone you love needs rehab services, call 800-662-4357 to speak to a specialist about treatment options and costs.
- National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2018). Types of Treatment Programs. National Institutes of Health.
- McCarty, D., Braude, L., Lyman, D. R., Dougherty, R. H., Daniels, A. S., Ghose, S. S., & Delphin-Rittmon, M. E. (2014). Substance Abuse Intensive Outpatient Programs: Assessing the Evidence. Psychiatric Services, 65(6), 718-726.
- Parthasarathy, S., Chi, F. W., Mertens, J. R., & Weisner, C. (2012). The role of continuing care on 9-year cost trajectories of patients with intakes into an outpatient alcohol and drug treatment program. Medical Care, 50(6), 540-546.
- Department of Health and Human Services. (n.d.). Mental health and substance abuse health coverage options.
- Office of the Surgeon General (US). (2016). Facing Addiction in America: The Surgeon General’s Report on Alcohol, Drugs, and Health. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (US).
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (n.d.). Directory of Single State Agencies (SSA) for Substance Abuse Services.