Drug Treatment for Addicts with Limited Money, Medicare
For many people, finding the right treatment program is not always easy. Not only do program offerings vary, but programs can be costly. Some centers are strictly private pay and over many people’s budget. Or if programs do take insurance, they don’t take your insurance. Maybe you don’t even have insurance.
If you’re a family member looking for treatment for a loved one, the search can seem overwhelming. Entering “Addiction treatment” or “Treatment center” and the name of your state into an internet search engine turns up numerous choices. What do you do?
Consider a web-based company that refers you to centers according to your specific needs and ability to pay. Drug and Alcohol Rehab Services (www.drugandalcoholrehab.net) in California is one such site.
Founder Debra Norton calls her nationwide referral service a “1-stop shop” that helps people find treatment programs in line with their budget. She started the website to “offer direction to people so they weren’t having to call 1,000 phone numbers and end up with only high-end services.” Indeed, Norton provided a wealth of information when I interviewed her recently.
For example, there are a number of centers that accept insurance. She explained that some accept Medicare, the federal insurance program for those 65 and older and others who are disabled. Similarly, she said, some accept TRICARE, the insurance program for military personnel and veterans.
Financing is another option if you have decent credit, Norton said. She knows of treatment programs that work with finance companies to help clients, and she has heard of payments as low as $200 per month. “Maybe you’ve asked for help and your father has said he will help pay,” she said. Financing may be especially helpful in that case. Norton takes the time to talk to those seeking treatment.
There are also sliding-fee programs. But one of the first questions Norton asks is whether you’re willing and able to travel, because not all programs exist in every state. In addition, you may be placed on a waiting list for some state-funded programs.
Norton suggests going to www.rehabusa.net, which will bring you to SAMHSA, a government site on which you can find various facilities. However, be careful when looking for referral sites, Norton advises. Some sites portray themselves as such (“Find Treatment Now”), but are actually treatment centers and may refer you to their three facilities, for example.
You can contact Norton at 800-515-3277, or by filling out the form on the DARS site. Her other is site is Outreach Services (www.drugandalcoholrehabchoices.com, 866-418-1397), which includes quite a bit of information on addiction.