Alabama Alcohol and Drug Use Statistics
Noteworthy recent alcohol and drug use statistics in Alabama include:1, 2, 3
In 2020 alone, Alabama reported 1,029 drug-related overdose deaths. From May 2019 to May 2020, the state saw a 20% increase in opioid-related fatalities.
From 2019 to 2020, roughly 439,000 state residents reported using illicit drugs at least once within a 30-day period.
Between 2019 and 2020, approximately 849,000 residents reported engaging in binge drinking behavior at least once per month.
In 2020, roughly 14.2% of Alabama adults aged 12 and older were diagnosed with a substance use disorder involving illicit drugs, prescription drugs, or alcohol.
Cost of Alcohol and Drug Rehab in Alabama
The cost of alcohol and drug rehab in Alabama varies from facility to facility based on several factors. Some of the many variables that will help determine your treatment costs include:
Whether you need inpatient or outpatient treatment
The type of rehab facility you select (luxury vs. standard)
The length of time you spend in treatment
Whether you have health insurance and what your plan covers
Whether you qualify for reduced-cost or free care at a government-funded or non-profit rehab center
If the potential cost of rehab feels somewhat overwhelming, know that most rehab facilities have several payment options to help you access care. Some treatment centers offer financial assistance or income-based services, and most accept public or private insurance to reduce treatment costs.
Where Can I Find Low-Cost and Free Rehabs in Alabama?
If you’re unsure how you’ll pay for addiction treatment, you may qualify for low-cost or free care at a state-funded alcohol or drug rehab in Alabama. These treatment centers receive funding from the state and federal government, so they can provide quality care at little to no cost for eligible individuals.
State-funded rehabs provide many of the same evidence-based treatment services as privately funded facilities, including detoxification, inpatient and outpatient treatment, mental health care, and transitional housing. However, these facilities receive limited funding, so they may not offer alternative therapies or fancy amenities.
To get into a low-cost or free drug or alcohol rehab in Alabama, you will need to provide proof of income, U.S. citizenship, and state residency. You may also need to show proof that you’re uninsured or underinsured.
Does Insurance Cover Drug Rehab in Alabama?
Under the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act and the Affordable Care Act, behavioral health services, which include addiction and mental treatment, are essential health benefits. This means both public and private insurers must offer plans that provide some degree of coverage for these treatment services.4
Medicaid is a federal and state-sponsored insurance program that provides low-cost or free healthcare coverage for eligible low-income adults and their dependents. In Alabama, Medicaid covers several medically necessary addiction and co-occurring disorder treatment services, including:5, 6
- Evaluations and medical assessments
- Hospital-based inpatient treatment
- Outpatient treatment
- Medication-assisted treatment (MAT)
Although Medicaid covers addiction treatment, many Alabama rehabs do not accept it as a form of payment.
Medicare is a federal insurance program for individuals aged 65 and older as well as certain younger people with disabilities. This type of insurance covers many of the same medically necessary addiction and mental health treatment services that Medicaid covers. However, Medicare has four parts—A, B, C, and D—each covering different things.7
If you have health insurance from a private provider like Blue Cross Blue Shield, Aetna, or Humana, it should provide coverage for addiction treatment. However, the extent of your coverage depends on your provider and plan.
Many rehab facilities only accept specific types of private insurance, so some may not take your plan as a form of payment.
Inpatient vs. Outpatient Drug Rehab in Alabama
Advantages of Inpatient Addiction Treatment
Inpatient addiction treatment offers several personalized, evidence-based therapies that can help you jumpstart your recovery journey. Other advantages of this type of treatment include:9
- The ability to remove yourself from your day-to-day environment, so you can avoid stressors and triggers
- Constant access to treatment professionals who are always available for support
- A secure and highly structured environment that provides the stability necessary to focus on treatment and recovery
- Close supervision from treatment professionals who continually monitor your progress and adjust your treatment plan as necessary
- The opportunity to build relationships with your peers in recovery, who can be a valuable source of support both during and after rehab
Advantages of Outpatient Addiction Treatment
If you don’t need high-level supervision and have a strong support system at home, outpatient drug or alcohol rehab in Alabama may suit your needs. Advantages of outpatient treatment include:8
- It typically costs much less than inpatient rehab.
- You can live at home or in supportive housing while engaging in treatment.
- You may have enough flexibility in your schedule to work, go to school, or care for family while in rehab.
- You can regularly put your recovery and coping skills to use in a real-world environment.
- Your transition from treatment to normal, community life will likely be less jarring.
- You’ll have access to various intensities of care, depending on your needs and recovery progress.
Medical Detox Services
Medical detox involves 24/7 medical care and supervision in a hospital setting. These services manage uncomfortable and potentially dangerous withdrawal symptoms as well as prevent or address any emergencies that may arise. Treatment may involve withdrawal medications, adjunctive medications, and supportive care like IV fluids.
Although withdrawal can be distressing from any substance, certain substances pose a greater risk than others. These include alcohol, sedatives, and opioids, all of which can cause painful and potentially dangerous withdrawal symptoms. Medical detox is the safest setting for withdrawal and can help people achieve medical stability before beginning a drug rehab program.
Types of Drug and Alcohol Rehabs in Alabama
Holistic rehab programs provide a “whole-person” approach to addiction treatment that focuses on helping your mind, body, and spirit heal from substance abuse. In addition to evidence-based addiction therapies, these programs often include alternative or experiential therapies that encourage overall well-being. Depending on the program, meditation, yoga, nature therapy, art therapy, or animal therapy may be offered.
Christian rehab programs emphasize the role of a higher power and spiritual healing in the addiction recovery process. These programs typically incorporate prayer, spiritual counseling, and other faith-based activities into their treatment model in addition to evidence-based addiction therapies. Participants may be encouraged to find strength and guidance in scripture and understand how the grace of a higher power can help free them from addiction.
Luxury Alabama drug rehabs and alcohol rehabs provide highly personalized, comprehensive addiction treatment in an upscale setting. These facilities spare no expense when it comes to making patients feel comfortable and often feel like a luxury resort rather than a rehab center.
In addition to providing evidence-based therapies, most luxury rehab facilities also include holistic and alternative therapies in their recovery model to support whole-person wellness.
Therapist-to-patient ratios are usually very low, and patients enjoy private rooms, gourmet meals, and other amenities not offered at standard rehab facilities.
Executive rehab programs are specifically designed for high-level professionals. These programs provide a high level of discretion for individuals working through recovery who may fear career or reputational damage as a result of enrolling in rehab.
Executive programs are residential and offer luxury amenities and access to computers, internet, and private conference rooms for work-related activities.
Dual Diagnosis Rehab
Substance use and mental health disorders often co-occur, which means they affect someone at the same time. If you live with addiction and have mental health concerns, you may benefit from a dual diagnosis rehab program.
This type of program provides multidisciplinary treatment that addresses each disorder and any interactions between the two. Because co-occurring disorders often influence one another, receiving targeted treatment for both conditions is essential.
Medication-assisted treatment (MAT) combines behavioral therapies and FDA-approved medications to treat opioid and alcohol use disorders. These medications support recovery by reducing substance cravings, alleviating withdrawal symptoms, rebalancing brain chemistry, and preventing overdose and relapse.11
Research shows that MAT can successfully treat substance use disorders and often helps people sustain recovery. Studies also suggest that MAT can help reduce the risk of contracting hepatitis C or HIV by lowering the potential for relapse. MAT is also proven to:11
- Increase patient survival rates
- Improve patient retention in treatment
- Increase patients’ likelihood of obtaining and maintaining gainful employment
- Reduce illicit opioid use and related criminal activity among people with addiction
- Improve birth outcomes among pregnant people with substance use disorders
How to Get Methadone at a Methadone Clinic:
Methadone is an FDA-approved, long-acting, full opioid agonist used to treat opioid addiction as part of a comprehensive medication-assisted treatment program.
As a schedule II controlled medication, methadone is highly regulated and only available through a SAMHSA-certified and DEA-registered treatment program. To access this medication, you must undergo an in-depth evaluation with a qualified treatment provider and meet specific diagnostic criteria. If your provider determines methadone may be beneficial for your condition, you can receive it at an authorized treatment clinic.12
Suboxone is a combination of two FDA-approved medications, buprenorphine and naloxone. Buprenorphine is a partial opioid agonist that binds to the brain’s opioid receptors to alleviate withdrawal symptoms and cravings without producing full opioid effects. Naloxone is an opioid antagonist that will rapidly reverse the effects of buprenorphine if a person attempts to misuse the medication.13,14
Because Suboxone has a potential for misuse, it’s highly regulated and only accessible through licensed and DEA-registered physicians. To find a Suboxone doctor, you can use SAMHSA’s Buprenorphine Practitioner Locator tool.15
Naltrexone for Alcohol or Opioid Addiction: Naltrexone is a prescription medication that’s FDA approved to treat alcohol and opioid addiction. Naltrexone works by blocking the brain’s opioid receptors to reduce the euphoric effects of opioids and lessen substance cravings. This medication is prescribed as part of a comprehensive treatment program that includes therapy, social support, lifestyle changes, and compliance monitoring.16
Virtually any licensed physician can administer injectable naltrexone within a treatment setting. People who are in long-term recovery can also take the medication in pill form at home, but only as directed by their doctor.16
Antabuse (Disulfiram) for Alcohol Addiction: Antabuse is the brand name for disulfiram, an FDA-approved, prescription medication for the treatment of alcoholism. This medication helps reduce the urge to drink by blocking the enzymes that metabolize alcohol after consumption. If a person drinks any alcohol after taking disulfiram, their body will accumulate toxic alcohol byproducts that cause unpleasant side effects like nausea, vomiting, and dizziness.17
Acamprosate for Alcohol Use Disorder: Acamprosate is another prescription medication approved by the FDA for the treatment of alcohol dependence. This medication is used in conjunction with counseling and social support to help curb alcohol cravings, reduce post-acute withdrawal symptoms, and prevent relapse. Acamprosate works by rebalancing levels of neurotransmitters in the brain that are affected by long-term alcohol misuse. However, it does not alleviate acute withdrawal symptoms, so it’s typically prescribed for persons who’ve already completed the detoxification process.18
Should I Travel to Alabama for Alcohol and Drug Treatment?
Going to a drug or alcohol rehab in Alabama may benefit you, but traveling isn’t right for everyone. Consider the following questions to determine if you should travel for treatment:
- Do you have access to the type(s) of treatment you need in your local area? If not, are those type(s) of treatment readily available in Alabama?
- Do you need to separate yourself from your day-to-day environment so you can eliminate distractions and focus on recovery?
- Does your health insurance cover treatment at Alabama drug rehabs or alcohol rehabs? If it does, does your plan cover any of your travel-related expenses?
- Do you know anyone in the area who can support you while you work through recovery?
Regional Considerations in Alabama
Each of Alabama’s four regions boasts unique geography, attractions, and culture. If you love mountains, you may want to consider facilities in Alabama’s Northern region, which is home to Huntsville, Decatur, and the southern Appalachians.
If you prefer a more urban environment, consider rehab facilities in Alabama’s central region, which is home to Birmingham, the largest city in the state. Here, you’ll find the Talladega Superspeedway and Horseshoe Bend National Military Park, as well as many museums and historic sites. If you’re outdoorsy, you’ll likely also appreciate the region’s rivers and lakes.
Alabama’s southern region is widely known for its many historic sites and museums as the state’s historic capital, Montgomery, is located here. The area is also abundant in natural beauty and is home to many waterways, state parks, and national preservation areas.
Last but not least is Alabama’s Gulf Coast region, where you’ll find sugar sand beaches and the gorgeous Gulf of Mexico. Here, you’ll have quick access to the city of Mobile, which is home to “America’s Amazon,” one of the largest wetland ecosystems in the country.
Drug and Alcohol Laws in Alabama
Alabama Naloxone Standing Order: In Alabama, anyone at risk of experiencing an opioid overdose or anyone who may be able to help an overdose victim can get naloxone without a prescription. Only licensed healthcare providers and pharmacies may dispense naloxone to persons in need upon receiving written communication that a requesting individual is an eligible person.19
Drug Treatment Court: Several Alabama districts operate drug treatment courts, which offer non-violent offenders with addiction an alternative to traditional court proceedings. Treatment courts partner with rehab facilities, law enforcement, social service agencies, and other agencies to provide comprehensive addiction and mental health treatment for eligible persons. These programs aim to encourage non-violent offenders to heal from the effects of substance abuse and become more productive citizens.20
Alabama Good Samaritan Law: In Alabama, anyone who in good faith seeks emergency medical attention for a person who appears to be experiencing an overdose cannot be prosecuted for a controlled substance offense. However, this law excludes persons in possession of illicit substances with an intent to distribute.21
If you need assistance selecting the right alcohol or drug rehab in Alabama, we’re available 24/7 to help. Call us at 800-926-9037 (Who Answers?) to speak with a treatment support specialist who can help you explore your Alabama treatment options.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics. (2022). Drug Overdose Mortality by State.
- Alabama Department of Public Health. (2019 July). Overdose Surveillance Summary
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality. (2019, 2020). National Survey on Drug Use and Health
- Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. (n.d.). The Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act (MHPAEA).
- Alabama Medicaid. (n.d.). Your Guide to Alabama Medicaid
- Alabama Medicaid. (n.d.). State of Alabama, 1905(a)(29) Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT)
- U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. (2020 March). Medicare & Your Mental Health Benefits
- McCarty, D., Braude, L., Lyman, D. R., Dougherty, R. H., Daniels, A. S., Ghose, S. S., & Delphin-Rittmon, M. E. (2014). Substance Abuse Intensive Outpatient Programs: Assessing the Evidence. Psychiatric services (Washington, D.C.), 65(6), 718-726.
- National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2019). Treatment Approaches for Drug Addiction DrugFacts.
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Office of the Surgeon General. (2016). Facing Addiction in America: The Surgeon General’s Report on Alcohol, Drugs, and Health.
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2022). Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT).
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2022). Methadone.
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2022). Buprenorphine.
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2022). Naloxone.
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (n.d.). Buprenorphine Practitioner Locator.
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2022). Naltrexone.
- U.S. National Library of Medicine. (2017). Disulfiram. MedlinePlus.
- U.S. National Library of Medicine. (2016). Acamprosate. MedlinePlus.
- Alabama Department of Public Health. (n.d.). Standing Order of the State Health Officer Naloxone Distribution for Overdose Prevention
- Alabama Administrative Office of the Courts. (n.d.). Accountability Courts. Educational Programs.
- United States Government Accountability Office. (2021, March). Drug Abuse, Most States of Good Samaritan Laws and Research Indicates They May Have Positive Effects