How Do Free Drug Addiction Treatment Centers Work
It can be daunting to hear the phrase “free drug addiction treatment centers,” as it seems facilities such as these are too good to be true. But they do exist, and there are ways in which patients can receive addiction treatment at no cost. While these facilities are few and far between, they work in a number of ways to help patients recover from drug abuse.
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Obviously, someone must be paying for the addiction treatment patients receive at these free centers. According to SAMHSA, “Data show that private nonprofit organizations operated the majority of facilities offering ‘all free’ care,” 73.8 percent to be exact. In many instances, these facilities are given funds from the government or even from private citizens in order to ensure that patients who cannot afford to pay for addiction treatment will not have to.
What is Available?
These facilities often have the false reputation of not providing the same level of care which patients receive at more expensive centers. In truth, free addiction clinics give patients the same basic options that nearly every clinic does, whether expensive, low-cost or free: detox, medication, and therapy. According to the NIDA, “Medication and behavioral therapy, especially when combined, are important elements of an overall therapeutic process that often begins with detoxification, followed by treatment and relapse prevention.”
Although patients in free facilities do not often have access to certain alternative methods of treatment like acupuncture, music and art therapy, or exercise and nutritional classes, these treatments can be effective for some but are not a part of the program that has been deemed most effective medically and scientifically. And, in other ways, patients receive additional treatments in free clinics such as:
- Help setting up aftercare
- Legal aid
- Vocational counseling
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How Long Do Patients Stay?
This varies from facility to facility. In some cases, patients are only allowed to stay until they are stable from their withdrawal, while in others, patients are given the option to attend treatment for a long time. Some free inpatient programs can even last months or a year depending on the facility and what it offers. This is important to know before treatment starts, as the length of the program often affects the individual’s recovery. If they leave too early, it can be detrimental and lead to issues like relapse.
Who Can Become a Patient?
In most cases, individuals are allowed to attend treatment at a free facility if they can prove that they need this type of financial assistance. Usually, they are asked to show some proof of a low income or another financially-relevant issue (like job loss caused by addiction). This is not meant to cause problems for patients who cannot attend the facility but rather to ensure that those who truly need it will not have to wait a very long time in order to start treatment. These kinds of long wait lists can be dangerous and lead to relapse before treatment has even begun.
Free drug addiction treatment centers work by allowing patients to attend the program without paying high prices so that they can protect what money they have and still achieve a solid recovery.
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