How To Pay For Alcohol And Drug Rehab

Medically Reviewed by Johnelle Smith, M.D. on January 13, 2022

Affordable addiction treatment plans are available by paying for drug rehab services with insurance, scholarships and grants, personal and health loans, paying on a sliding scale, and more.

How To Pay For Drug And Alcohol Rehab

The cost of a drug and alcohol rehab program can often make treatment inaccessible for those who do not have hundreds or thousands of dollars saved up for something like this.

The average outpatient treatment program can cost between $1,000 and $10,000, depending on the level of intensity. Inpatient residential treatment programs may cost more than $10,000.

Fortunately, there are several ways to cover the cost of addiction treatment, including everything from health insurance to scholarship funds.

With one of the funding sources below, you can find inpatient and outpatient programs, aftercare programs, group therapy, support groups, and other trusted services for addiction recovery.

Payment Options At Drug Treatment Centers

Those who have private health insurance can use their plan to cover services such as behavioral therapy, outpatient programs (OP), and inpatient treatment.

If you do not have private health insurance or require additional financial assistance to cover copayments and fees, there are several other payment assistance options.

Private Health Insurance

If you are insured by your employer or independently, you should first consider your health insurance plan.

Depending on the insurance provider, you may get the full cost of rehab covered, or most of it covered. Additional factors to consider are your deductible, copay, and prior authorization (PA).

The following major health insurance companies often cover addiction services:

  • Aetna
  • Amerigroup/AmeriHealth
  • Anthem
  • Assurant Health
  • Beacon Insurance
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield
  • Cigna
  • Health Alliance
  • Humana Health
  • Kaiser Permanente
  • Medical Mutual
  • Obamacare (The Affordable Care Act)
  • Tri-Care
  • United Healthcare

Remember that your covered services may vary based on your health plan and which state you live in.

While these insurance providers do typically cover drug addiction treatment, you’ll need to verify the available services by reviewing your member handbook.

The final cost of treatment will depend largely on your deductible and copays. If you have a lower deductible, you won’t need to cover as much out-of-pocket.

For those with a higher deductible, you’ll need to meet that amount first, which will increase out-of-pocket fees.

State-Funded Health Insurance

For those who cannot cover the cost of drug treatment services with private health insurance, a state-funded program is a good next step when looking for payment options.

Examples of state-funded health insurance programs include:

  • Medicaid
  • Medicare

Qualifications, income limitations, and demographic requirements vary based on the state and the federal poverty level (FPL).

The FPL is based on household size:

  • $12,880 for individuals
  • $17,420 for a family of two
  • $21,960 for a family of three
  • $26,500 for a family of four
  • $31,040 for a family of five
  • $35,580 for a family of six
  • $40,120 for a family of seven
  • $44,660 for a family of eight

This may vary based on state guidelines. You’ll need to visit your state’s Medicaid website to find a more accurate list of annual incomes.

For many people, Medicaid provides free and very low-cost drug and alcohol treatment services. There are some fees and copayments, but these generally range from $1 to $25 per service.

Some beneficiaries, such as children and pregnant women, may be exempt from covering any copays, making treatment free.

There may be fewer services available when compared to a private insurance provider, but you’ll have access to most of the major treatment programs at rehab centers that accept Medicaid.

Scholarship Programs

If you need help paying for a portion of, or the full cost of your treatment program, you might consider finding rehab centers that offer scholarship programs.

These treatment facilities offer funds to:

  • people with low incomes
  • those without medical insurance
  • pregnant women
  • children
  • adolescents
  • other groups who qualify

The amount you might receive depends on the resources available. Many treatment providers get federal and state funds, donations, and have other fundraisers to help cut down costs for those who qualify for their scholarship program.

Treatment centers use these funds to create scholarship programs for those seeking a rehab program at their facility.

The following organizations provide scholarships to pay for addiction treatment:

  • ARCHway Institute for Mental Health and Addictive Disorders: ARCHway provides scholarships for drug and alcohol rehab treatment.
  • Cody’s Fresh Start: Scholarships for medical detoxification, treatment, sober living, and family support are provided here.
  • Don’t Judge Me, Help Me – Opiate Outreach of North Carolina: Scholarships are available for detox, inpatient, OP, sober living, medication-assisted treatment, and more.
  • Lit Path: Dedicated to helping those with addiction, Lit Path offers annual scholarships to help cover treatment costs for mental health and substance use disorder programs.
  • Living Amends: This non-profit organization provides scholarships to Texas residents who have completed a treatment program and are looking to continue their recovery.
  • Parents Supporting Parents: An organization for parents with children who have an addiction, they award admission funds for people seeking substance abuse treatment.
  • Peacock Addiction Scholarship Foundation: Here, addiction treatment scholarships and emotional support are available to families in need.
  • Second Chance Foundation: You can get three months of recovery at a treatment facility covered by this scholarship program.
  • Shannon J Scholarship: This organization will provide funds to those getting treatment at pre-selected, verified drug and alcohol addiction treatment centers.
  • 10,000 Beds: This is a scholarship program that partners with drug and alcohol treatment programs throughout the United States to cover expenses for those in need.

Sliding Scales

People who have low incomes or some qualifying factor for partially compensated treatment can often pay on a sliding scale.

This is a common form of financial assistance used by many hospitals, clinics, and some private treatment centers that involves paying what you can, which is based on your income.

Many outpatient and inpatient rehab centers base their scale on the federal poverty level listed above. Rates and fees will vary based on how much funding the treatment provider has and the location.

Here is an example of a sliding scale provided by Lowell Community Health Center, a Lowell, MA drug rehab facility:

  • a single person 0% to 100% of the FPL (less than $12,880) is responsible for $0 of treatment expenses
  • a single person 101% to 125% of the FPL (less than $16,100) is responsible for $10 of treatment expenses
  • a single person 126% to 150% of the FPL (less than $19,320) is responsible for $20 of treatment expenses
  • a single person 151% to 175% of the FPL (less than $22,540) is responsible for $25 of treatment expenses
  • a single person 176% to 200% of the FPL (less than $25,760) is responsible for $30 of treatment expenses
  • a single person over 200% of the FPL (greater than 25,760) is responsible for the full cost of treatment

Many sliding fee scales are similar to the one above, as they’re typically centered on the FPL. However, private rehab centers may offer different scales based on additional factors.

The above fees may also vary depending on your household income and may increase as your family size is increased. A single-person household will have lower fees than a two-income household.


Crowdfunding is a fundraising tool used to collect funds for a specific cause or purpose. You can use crowdfunding to raise money for an addiction treatment program.

Examples of crowdfunding websites include:

  • CoFund Health, a free crowdfunding website that allows people to start campaigns to get donations from friends, family members, and other people willing to help.
  • GoFundMe, a fundraising platform to help individuals, families, organizations, and charities that anyone can easily donate to.
  • YouCaring, now an entity of GoFundMe, can help you fundraise for medical goals, financial emergencies, and more.

Not everyone is comfortable with letting the public know that they’re raising money for an addiction rehab program.

If you’re uncomfortable seeking help or wish to remain anonymous, you might also consider having a trusted family member or friend set up a crowdfunding account on your behalf.

That way, you don’t have to put your name on anything, and your family member or friend can wire the money to you via another money-sharing platform.

There is also less stigma surrounding issues of mental health and substance abuse, and many people are ready and willing to support others’ health and recovery. Getting outside support can be difficult, but it’s a good first step toward recovery.

Seek Help From Loved Ones

If you’re not ready to set up a fundraiser, you might also consider any friends, family members, or loved ones who can help.

This may feel difficult or uncomfortable, especially if these people have offered financial assistance in the path.

But your health and sobriety are of the utmost importance. If you have loved ones who can help you emotionally and financially, reach out for support.

Once you’re out of recovery and in a more stable position, you can work toward paying back any personal loans.

Obtain A Health Loan

You can often pay for a detox program, outpatient treatment service, or residential rehab program with a health loan, which you can get from your local bank or an online lender.

This will come as an expense and add debt to repay, but your health is worth investing in. Financially, it’s more expensive to pursue an addiction than it is to pursue recovery.

A recovery program may be a one-time loan of $1,000 to $10,000 (which may be less or more, depending on the type of treatment program).

Consider the cost of alcohol addiction. If a person spends $50 per week on alcohol, that’s a total of $2,600 per year. If the addiction lasts three to four years, the upkeep of purchasing alcohol quickly surpasses the cost of treatment.

A person who struggles with polysubstance abuse — that is, being addicted to two or more substances at once — may spend thousands of dollars more per year with added substances.

Ultimately, health loans may seem intimidating, but the benefits far outweigh the potential negative financial repercussions.

Using Savings

When insurance stops paying for your drug rehab program or other funding sources fall through, you can also dip into savings accounts or borrow from a 401k.

Again, while this can feel like a risky financial move, your savings exist to act as support when you need it for major life events, and a rehab program is a necessary measure for your health.

If you do not have enough saved for the entire program, or you’d prefer not to use your savings to pay for the full cost of treatment, you might do a combination of savings and a loan, personal loans, crowdfunding, etc.

How To Get Help Paying For A Drug Rehab Program

If you or someone you love are looking for assistance finding a rehab facility, talking through financing options, and insurance, reach out to our helpline.

Our trained representatives can make a referral to a treatment facility that offers payment plans, accepts your insurance policy, and provides a range of treatment options.

This page does not provide medical advice. See more

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These include peer-reviewed journals, government entities and academic institutions, and leaders in addiction healthcare and advocacy. Learn more about how we safeguard our content by viewing our editorial policy.

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Medically Reviewed by
Johnelle Smith, M.D. on January 13, 2022
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