Health insurance is a blessing when alcoholism strikes. Even so, not everyone who has an alcoholism problem has health insurance. After all, most people get health insurance through their employers, and people with drinking problems often lose their jobs. On the flip side, a study in the journal Social Science and Medicine suggests that becoming unemployed actually leads to alcoholism in some people. No matter the cause for the lack of insurance, it shouldn’t keep people out of treatment programs that can help. Those who have insurance might consider getting care now, before that insurance runs out.
Alcoholism Treatment With Insurance
Insurance policies may set specific limitations on the alcoholism care that’s provided and covered. While some provide care for the physical aspects of the disease, for example, others cover the whole spectrum of needs people might have. While some programs allow people to get care anywhere, others have set rules about where people can go and what kind of care they can get. As a result, even though people with insurance are in a good position to get excellent care that’s somewhat paid for, they should ask questions and ensure that they understand just what is covered and how the plan is designed to work. The fine print in many insurance policies can be confusing and even intimidating, so families shouldn’t be afraid to call a representative from the insurance company for help, if needed.
Rehab Without Insurance
People who don’t have insurance coverage shouldn’t feel as though they can’t get treatment for alcoholism. According to the Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality, about 90 percent of treatment facilities accept cash or payments from people who have addictions. For some families, out-of-pocket payments are the best way to address an addiction issue.
Families may not have the funds on hand to pay for care, but they might be able to borrow from friends and family members in order to come up with the fees that could result in help for someone they love. Asking for help in this manner can be embarrassing, but it could make a real difference for someone in need. After all, if left untreated, an alcoholic person can devastate a family’s finances. With help, however, that person could become a robust member of a productive family. That improvement could be well worth the loans families might need to take out.
Those who can’t pay for care may also be able to access programs in the community. Many community-based alcohol treatment programs receive government assistance. This allows them to use a sliding fee scale, charging lower fees for services according to each client’s ability to pay. Families who meet the guidelines for this type of assistance may pay only a few dollars for each session attended. The wait times for these programs can be somewhat long, however, and this might allow people to relapse to alcohol use before the program even starts. Families who have to wait might find help through:
- Support groups like Alcoholics Anonymous
- Sober friends who might be willing to mentor a person new to sobriety
- The family doctor, who might provide medication support
- A family spiritual advisor, such as a priest or rabbi
Recent passage of the healthcare reform bill opens up a lot of new questions. With the complexity of the bill, it is somewhat difficult to get answers about specific health situations. For example, it’s difficult to determine how this new set of laws about health care will affect programs and Medicaid or sliding fee scales. Hopefully, payment for much-needed alcohol treatment will not be a concern anymore in the near future. After all, treatment really does work. As a study in the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs points out, long-term therapies given to people with alcoholism have the ability to make big changes. Those who have extended care, good relationships and a support group to lean on tend to stay sober, while those who don’t have these resources fall back into abuse. Finding a way to pay for care is vital, if families want the person they love to really get better.
Alcohol Treatment and Insurance
Reading about insurance and alcoholism treatments can be a good first step for families in need. Since treatment is so personalized and so personal, it makes sense for families to take the next step and ask their own questions about their specific situations. If you’d like help in understanding what questions to ask, please call us at Michael’s House. We have advisors ready to take your call.
Speak with an Admissions Coordinator 760-548-4032