Once you finally made the brave decision to seek help for your struggles with addiction, you probably have a lot of questions. What will it be like? How long will I need treatment? And, of course, how am I going to pay for all of this?
After all, some inpatient, and even outpatient, services are expensive. If you have to pay out-of- pocket it can mean spending thousands of dollars. Of course, consider this an investment in your future. You want to get well and live a fulfilling life. Treatment helps strengthen your relationships and, most importantly, stay clean.
Many insurance plans do cover at least some of the costs of inpatient and outpatient drug treatment. Of course, coverage varies by state and your particular plan.
Kaiser Permanente Drug REhab
Kaiser is a not-for-profit health insurance provider. In contrast, insurance companies like United Healthcare and Aetna are for-profit. Companies considered for-profit have one main goal–making money. Sometimes they may short-change your treatments in order to make more money.
Kaiser invests some the money they make into worthwhile programs like community outreach and creating new technology. Overall, Kaiser insurance is considered a very good insurance with comprehensive and relatively low cost health care. Unfortunately, Kaiser insurance isn’t offered everywhere. Currently it serves eight states: California, Colorado, Georgia, Hawaii, Maryland, Oregon, Virginia, and Washington. Kaiser also has coverage in the District of Columbia.
If you live in these areas, Kaiser offers insurance through employers, on the insurance marketplace, and Medicare plans. Individuals who purchase Kaiser insurance through the marketplace tend to have Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) plans. Most HMO medical expenses are only covered when you use medical services within their network.
Plans also have different “tiers”. These levels of insurance have different monthly payments, deductibles, out-of-pocket expenses.
So what would it cost to receive addiction treatment with a Kaiser insurance plan? For example, with California’s Platinum 90 HMO plan a visit to an addiction outpatient program may only cost $5. Inpatient services will cost you $250 a day for up to five days. After that, there is no charge. In contrast, if you have California’s Bronze 60 HMO, an inpatient substance abuse program may still only cost you $5. Visiting an inpatient program, however is 100% co-insurance. Meaning you will have to pay a predetermined percentage of your inpatient care up to your out-of-pocket limit. In this case, the out-of-pocket limit is $7,550 for an individual.
Of course, this is only an example of one plan. Coverages vary based on your state and individual plan.
Getting to Know Your Kaiser Insurance Plan
The best way to find out how much insurance coverage you can get for drug treatment is by consulting your policy. Of course, insurance policies can be confusing. Looking over pages of insurance language can leave you feeling confused and overwhelmed. How do you get simple answers to your insurance coverage questions? Here are a few options:
- Talk to your human resources department. If you get insurance through work, someone in human resources can answer questions about your insurance policy. You may, however, seem a little apprehensive talking about addiction therapy with your employer.
- Call your provider. Talking to a customer service representative may be less intimidating than speaking with a human resources professional. Look on the back of your member ID card to find the phone number for Member Services.
- Go online. Visiting the Kaiser website and accessing your plan is another way to check out your benefits.
- Contact your desired treatment facility. If you have a place for treatment in mind, consider calling the admissions specialist. They can find out if you are approved for treatment and what out-of-pocket costs you may have to pay.
Paying Out-of-Pocket Expenses for Drug and Alcohol Rehab
As mentioned earlier, think of addiction treatment as an investment in your future. While you may have to pay for some of the services out-of-pocket, the expense can change your life. Think of it this way: How much do you think you spent while using your drug of choice? Chances are it is less than the cost of treatment. And, once clean, you won’t be spending all that money to get drunk or high.
In addition, some treatment facilities offer sliding scale payments or scholarships depending on your income. Payment plans may also be available. Use whatever resources you have available so you can finally enjoy a drug-free life.