Recovery from any addiction is a life-long endeavor. Drug and alcohol addictions are diseases that can be arrested but will always be lying in wake for a chance to reappear. Unfortunately, far too many people in recovery go through relapses. It’s not a weakness of character but instead, its the power of the disease that creates relapse victims.
There’s no real shame in relapsing so long as the individual responds appropriately to their fall from sobriety. What is appropriate? The only thing on someone’s mind who has just gone through an alcohol relapse should be finding a way to get back into rehab. Yes, another stint in rehab is the proper course of action in most cases.
Upon coming to the realization they will need to go back into treatment, several concerns are sure to surface. Primary among those concerns would likely be having to deal with the costs of rehab. For the lucky ones who follow the law and maintain healthcare insurance, the costs for their prior treatment were likely covered at least in part.
Is the same coverage available after a relapse? That’s an excellent question. In the following discussion, we will address this question as well as how to position oneself to avoid any further issues with relapsing.
Insurance Coverage for Relapses and Relapse Prevention
As a quick reminder, the primary reason healthcare insurance providers cover any level of addiction treatment costs is because of the Affordable Care Act of 2009 (ACA). Based on the content of the law, insurance carriers are required to cover addiction treatment costs for alcoholism the same way they would the costs related to any other kind of medical condition.
The other relevant part of the ACA as it applies to alcohol addiction is the clause regarding preexisting conditions. According to the law, insurance companies are not permitted to discriminate against customers who have preexisting conditions of any kind. This is the clause that assures an individual’s healthcare insurance provider will have to cover the costs of treatment after a relapse.
There is an important caveat. The policy is only enforceable to the stated limits of the coverage. In other words, the extent of coverage will depend on the terms of the policy. This does not differ from the coverage the insurance company might have provided during the original stint in rehab.
The best way to avoid worrying about how to pay for treatment after a relapse is finding ways to avoid relapsing in the first place. Upon leaving rehab, each patient is typically made aware of relapse prevention resources. The options are brought to light for a reason. These are the tools that have helped millions of people in recovery stay in recovery. The three most common resources are:
- Additional outpatient counseling
- Sober Living
- !2-Step meetings
Additional Outpatient Counseling
After being discharged from treatment, patients are sent out into the world to test their sober wings. That doesn’t mean they are cured. It simply means the first phase of recovery is underway.
Once on the outside, there will likely be times when triggers are hit and temptation comes calling. In moments of weakness, it’ a really good idea for individual to check back into rehab for a little outpatient counseling. This is a great bridge between discharge and finally building the strength to stay on the straight and narrow path of recovery.
For exiting patients who might not yet be ready to take on a full life of responsibilities, a sober living home might be a good place to reside. During their time in a sober living environment, residents are given a set of rules and responsibilities they must abide by. As long as they follow the rules and make good progress, there will come a time when they should be ready to resume living life on their own.
In rehab, most patients learn the importance of support groups. On the outside, 12-step programs like NA and AA are great resources for support. These types of programs give its members a road map on how to live as sober people and where to go when the road of recovery gets a little bumpy. Nothing is more beautiful than one person in recovery helping another.
If you have recently been through a relapse, we encourage you to get back into rehab. If you have insurance, at least a portion of the costs will be covered. For more information about how to proceed, please call us at 772-934-6580 .