Substance use disorders are best treated through rehab programs. There are two major types of rehab: either inpatient or outpatient addiction treatment.
If you are enrolled in an inpatient rehab, you will have to stay inside a rehab facility for the whole duration of your treatment program. This can take anywhere from 28 to 90 days, depending on how severe your addiction is.
On the other hand, when you’re enrolled in an outpatient addiction treatment program, you don’t have to live inside a facility. Instead, you only have to go there during your scheduled therapy sessions. Afterwards, you can head back home, go to work, or school.
The main advantage of outpatient rehab is it does very little to disrupt your daily routines. In most cases, you can still show up to work or school if your scheduled therapies do not fall under school or office hours.
Another is the cost. Outpatient addiction treatment is often much cheaper than inpatient programs. Here’s why.
No need to pay for accommodation
If you’re in an outpatient rehab program, you do not have to be housed inside a facility for several days. The cost of accommodation is one huge reason inpatient rehabs are a lot more expensive. There, you have to pay for your room, your daily meals, water, and laundry services. These factors add a lot to the cost of the rehab program.
In contrast, you don’t need any of those in outpatient addiction treatment. Since you only go to the facility during your scheduled therapies, the cost is much less. You only pay for the professional fees of your therapists, as well as your transportation expenses.
No 24/7 support
When you live inside a rehab facility, you will have access to round-the-clock medical and mental health supervision. In case of any problems or emergencies, someone will always be ready to give you a hand. That’s one of the greatest advantages of inpatient rehab, and it also drives the cost higher. After all, it isn’t cheap to have people watching over you all of the time.
However, for outpatient rehabs, you don’t get this kind of on-demand support. Since you are not living inside a facility, you only have access to your therapists during your scheduled treatments. Without rehab professionals watching you 24/7, the costs are significantly lower for outpatient rehab.
You are not using the amenities of a rehab facility
Most rehab facilities have several amenities for their patients. These may include things like saunas, swimming pools, basketball courts, tennis courts, and the like. Use of these amenities is part of the cost of inpatient rehab, which is why it’s a lot more expensive than outpatient addiction treatment.
It’s like having a gym membership. If you use the facilities in a gym, you need to pay for them through a membership fee. In the same way, the cost of some inpatient rehab programs include a kind of “membership fee” to use the different recreational amenities of the rehab facility.
But for outpatient rehab, you don’t have access to these amenities, so you don’t need to pay for them.
How much does outpatient addiction treatment usually cost?
Many outpatient rehab programs cost around $5,000 for three months. The price can vary based on the facility, location, how long your therapy sessions last, and how many times a week you go there.
Some rehab facilities have higher fees than others, especially those in more expensive areas. The cost can also vary because of different professional fees of different therapists. If you are given medications, these will also add to the cost.
Is outpatient addiction treatment covered by insurance?
Most health insurance providers cover at least some part of the cost of outpatient rehab. Check with your insurance company to find out how much is covered. There may be costs that you would have to pay out of your own pocket.
If you are on Medicaid or Medicare, you can use these to lower the costs. Check with your rehab center if they accept Medicaid or Medicare. Take note that not all rehab facilities accept them.
If you don’t have insurance, some rehab programs offer financing. That way, you can pay incrementally instead of shelling out a large sum of money upfront. Each rehab has its own payment terms, so ask your rehab center first.
How long will each therapy session last?
There are three types of outpatient treatment. Here’s how long each one lasts:
- Standard outpatient programs often take 1 to 2 hours per day.
- Intensive outpatient programs usually last 3 hours per day.
- Partial hospitalization programs take 6 to 8 hours a day.
All of these programs also include an individual therapy session of 1 hour per week.
Each program can last up to three months. The length of each program depends on how severe your case of addiction is. The worse it is, the more time you have to spend in outpatient rehab.
When can I choose to enroll in outpatient addiction treatment?
Aside from the lower cost, there are other practical reasons for choosing outpatient treatment. One is it allows you to fulfill important responsibilities. With outpatient rehab, you don’t have to quit your job or take a really long leave. You can also go home to your family every day.
If you are still in the early stages of addiction, or if it’s mild, outpatient treatment is a good option. At this stage, you do not have to be confined to a facility to recover well.
Other times, outpatient treatment is used as aftercare following inpatient rehab. This is done to minimize the likelihood of relapse and to further improve the outcomes of recovery.
In any case, talk to your doctor or a recovery professional first. They will help you find the best treatment program that will give you the highest chances of a full recovery.