How to Find a State-Funded Rehab Center

Content Overview

What’s the best way to find a state-funded rehab center?

The Directory of Single State Agencies for Substance Abuse Services provides contact information for each state’s governing substance abuse agency. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration also provides a comprehensive listing of options available in each state.

For individuals struggling with drug or alcohol addiction who have limited resources to pay for treatment, state-funded rehabilitation centers may be an affordable option to get started on the road to recovery.

According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health in 2014, 4.1 million people who were struggling with addiction sought and received treatment of some kind, with only 2.3 million people getting it in a place that specifically treated addiction. State-funded rehab can help those who are left out of this figure.

While some people feel there is a stigma attached to this public assistance resource, it is still possible to use these clinics and treatment centers to obtain evidence-based medical detox, post-treatment counseling, and other important support systems that make long-term recovery attainable for those who are ready to take control of their addictions.

Individuals or their families and friends who want to seek out this resource may not know how to get started. With the right knowledge and resources, and a little preparation, the answers to the following frequently asked questions can open up the path to finding the right treatment center.

What Are State-Funded Rehab Centers?

rehabQuite simply, state-funded rehab centers are organizations that use government money, distributed by the state, to support people in recovery from addiction to alcohol or drugs. For those without a lot of income or with inadequate or no insurance, these centers provide detox, treatment, and support services.

Programs come in various forms, including inpatient, outpatient, and partial hospitalization, as well as follow-up support.

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) publication, Integrating Substance Abuse Treatment and Vocational Services, the money that states use to fund these centers comes from various sources. Some is provided through SAMHSA in the form of federal grants and from reimbursement through Medicaid, and some comes directly from the state budget. A challenge for those seeking treatment is that the amount and even the type of state support varies depending on the state – as do the requirements to qualify for this type of treatment – so it’s important for each person pursuing treatment to research and become aware of the offerings of their state.

Often, these centers are included as part of other state services, such as child social services, criminal justice and prison provisions, and other areas of state government, meaning that funding is provided specifically through an individual’s connection with those programs. Still, there are options for people not involved in these programs, as long as they qualify for services.

Who Qualifies for State-Funded Rehab?

Again, different states have different requirements and offerings when it comes to rehab funded through state and local governments. Therefore, it’s a good idea to locate the specific state agency that manages these programs and find out how to qualify in that particular state. The Directory of Single State Agencies (SSAs) for Substance Abuse Services provided by SAMHSA provides contacts for these agencies in each state.

Completing the requirements to qualify for these programs can take a little time and effort. Generally, those who wish to enroll in state-funded treatment centers are asked to provide the following:

  • Proof of residence
  • Proof of income status
  • Proof of legal residence in the US
  • Personal information on history and degree of addiction

Once this information is provided, and the individual is qualified and the need for addiction treatment services is verified, treatment can be provided.

How Quickly Will Treatment Begin?

Because funding for state treatment is limited and must be distributed among potentially large numbers of individuals, sometimes there is a waiting list to get into recommended inpatient treatment programs. In addition, certain people may be given priority for spaces, such as pregnant women, and are therefore moved to the top of the list, moving others down in priority.

This can sometimes deter people from getting help because they don’t want to wait, and they may then simply decide not to pursue treatment anymore. It has been demonstrated, as noted by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, that addiction treatment is more likely to be pursued if it is readily available when an individual is ready to seek it. Therefore, many of these state-funded rehab programs provide outpatient and medical maintenance services for those who are waiting for more intensive treatment.

Nicole Vasquez was 21 years old when she hit rock bottom. She was homeless, unemployed, and battling a drug addiction. She desperately needed help. But with no money and no health insurance, she figured a state-funded rehab facility was her best option, even though she heard there was often a long waiting list and it could take weeks or even months to get in.

“The process was pretty scary in the beginning I didn’t know if I was going to be able to get into a facility.. So I called 8 different treatment centers. I just happened to get lucky and they had a bed available.”

At the facility, she was one of more than hundred women.

“We didn’t have things like an individualized treatment.. We had the program, the 12 steps.. Dual diagnosis that a private a facility might have.”

This left Nicole on the search again, this time for a free program that could provide the mental health counseling she also desperately needed to get better, making her road to recovery even more challenging. But Nicole was determined and she didn’t care how long it took.

“So I was able to stay 5 months, I have friends able to stay in treatment for a year and some for 18 months.”

During those 5 months, she began rebuilding her life.

“Then I got to a certain level where I was still living the treatment facility, but I had a job.. It was sort of like my home.”

“It gave me the tools that I needed to be where I am today.”

Through her own recovery, Nicole has felt compelled to help others. Today, she does just that, as the Lead Alumni Coordinator for American Addiction Centers, one of the nation’s leading providers of substance abuse treatment. While its treatment centers aren’t state-funded, Nicole feels blessed to be part of a company that is transforming lives every day through its treatment centers, an option for those with insurance or who have the ability to pay for their care.

“Really what that allows me to do is connect with people just like me.. It’s incredible.”

Incredible in the fact that Nicole has connected with hundreds of American Addiction Centers alumni over the years. It’s a bond she doesn’t take for granted because this type of long-term support wasn’t offered at the state-funded facility.

“It’s all about building a community of people you can do life with.”

And these days life is good for Nicole. She hopes her story will inspire others to get help…no matter what.

“If a state-funded facility is your only option do it.. You need to get help.”

This tattoo is a reminder for Nicole of just how far she’s come and the treatment center that helped her get there.

“The facility that I went to will always be a part of my heart…it saved my life.. I wouldn’t be here today without it.”

Again, due to limited funding available, state-funded rehab is not necessarily able to provide the most current technologies and treatments, compared to private treatment centers. However, this doesn’t mean that the therapies offered won’t be effective. A study published in the Milbank Quarterly demonstrates that treatment in general – any level of treatment – is better at providing positive outcomes in lowering substance use, improving personal health and social relationships, and increasing public health and safety than no treatment. Other studies show that public funding of drug and alcohol addiction treatment helps lower crime rates and is more cost-effective than no treatment or minimal intervention. In this way, treatment from public rehab centers is just as valuable and can create the same positive outcomes as private treatment centers. That said, state-funded rehab relies on traditional, evidence-based treatment and is not necessarily going to keep up with the latest trends in treatment.

State-funded programs also may not have in-house counseling or other support services. Some of these facilities provide detox or medical management only, but will refer the client to counseling services and self-help groups after the fact, while private treatment centers may offer these services in-house. State-funded rehab centers are not likely to be as comfortable in terms of accommodations as private organizations. State funding generally does not provide for the comforts of home that are available through a private resident treatment facility. The public programs are more utilitarian and focused solely on treatment rather than on providing a spa-like atmosphere. Still, individuals who are determined to overcome their addictions should not find this to be an impediment to their progress.

Treatment through a state-funded program can range anywhere from free to several thousand dollars, depending on the individual’s qualification for the program and the required intensity of treatment – such as inpatient, outpatient, medication maintenance treatment, and so on. Depending on circumstances and state policy, it may be possible for an individual to be fully subsidized for treatment; for example, there are grants for these centers to support addiction treatment for pregnant women, veterans, or other specific groups. Private treatment, on the other hand, can range from several thousand dollars to tens of thousands of dollars. The level of comfort, amenities, and activities of these private facilities account for much of the difference in cost. In many cases, a percentage of this cost can be covered by insurance – sometimes even most of the cost. While there is usually still some amount to pay out of pocket, including co-insurance payments, deductibles, and other costs, those with insurance would do well to look into these types of treatment. In general, as with most things, it can be expected that the higher the cost, the more services and amenities are available to help make the detox and treatment process more comfortable and to provide a network of support beyond treatment without as much effort on the part of the client.

How to Find State-Funded Rehab

search for treatment Once an individual is ready for treatment, there are a number of resources to help find state-funded rehab programs. As listed above, the Directory of Single State Agencies (SSAs) for Substance Abuse Services provides contact information for each state’s agency governing substance abuse policy, funding, and services. Contacting this group for the relevant state can be the more relevant and informative way to find out more about what that state offers, and how to go about obtaining their services.

Another good way to search for treatment facilities is through SAMHSA’s website. This interactive page enables a visual search of state and municipality centers, and allows for narrowing requirements based on location by using the individual’s address, which is then completely deleted from the system following the search.

Finally, there are a number of websites that offer support in searching for treatment centers. These include sites like

Last updated on September 18, 20182018-09-18T18:28:32
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