San Francisco Drug and Alcohol Use Statistics
The opioid epidemic is particularly alarming in San Francisco. In 2020, fentanyl was the drug with the steepest rise in overdose deaths. According to the California Overdose Surveillance Dashboard, in 2020, San Francisco experienced:1,2
5,502 opioid-related overdose deaths
3,946 overdoses directly caused by fentanyl
16,547 emergency room visits related to opioid use
Nearly 15 million opioid prescriptions disbursed
Fentanyl isn’t the only substance posing issues for San Franciscans:3
If you or your loved one are among the many San Francisco residents dealing with substance abuse, a rehab facility can help you regardless of your stage of addiction.
Cost of Drug and Alcohol Rehab in San Francisco
The cost of rehab depends on many variables. If you prefer to live in luxury surroundings versus a modest home-style residency, you can expect to pay a higher residency fee. If you need clinical detox before beginning rehab, you can expect to spend at least a few days to a week of additional time in a treatment center, which will increase your costs.
Payment Options for California Rehab Facilities
Whatever your financial situation, drug or alcohol rehab in San Francisco can help. According to SAMHSA, within 25 miles of the city center, there are:4
Find Low-Cost and Free Rehabs in San Francisco
If you’re having difficulty paying the fees for private rehab facilities, public options may be available that offer lower rates for treatment. You can also reach out to religious organizations in the area to find other resources. In addition, a wealth of harm-reduction programs in the San Francisco area cater to low-income individuals in danger of relapse or overdose.
Popular Drug and Alcohol Rehab Centers in San Francisco
These highly rated alcohol and drug rehabs in San Francisco stand out because of their desirability, range of programming and therapies, and affordability.
Ohlhoff Recovery Programs
Ohlhoff Recovery Programs offer rehab services from 15 locations, including seven residential programs across the city. They are dedicated to providing care for diverse and low-income communities. Services include therapy, medical care, case management, and a variety of recovery settings, like their men- and women-only sober houses.
Walden House Inc.
Located on the southern edge of Japantown, Walden House Inc. offers intensive inpatient rehab as well as gender-specific care. Their 30-day recovery program was created to stabilize clients at the beginning of their recovery journey. Individualized treatment plans include different modalities, such as yoga and support groups, and offer a stable environment to heal. In addition, vocational assistance and ongoing support are provided to help ensure relapse prevention.
The Salvation Army Adult Rehabilitation Center
The Salvation Army Adult Rehabilitation Center offers a faith-based occupational therapy program to help teach those struggling with addiction how to cope without substances. Clients learn social and work skills through spiritual and evidence-based therapies and life coaching. As a result, the Salvation Army has helped more than 150,000 people treat addiction, reunify with their families, and regain stability in their lives.
What to Expect at a Drug Rehab in San Francisco
There are many options and avenues to explore when seeking treatment, and each center has its own philosophies and treatment styles. Wherever you choose to go, you can expect your rehab to include several core components, including multiple evidence-based treatments, medication management, detox as needed, dual diagnosis treatment, and case management.
If you’re in severe addiction or addicted to substances that cause painful withdrawal symptoms—such as Oxycontin or heroin—you’ll need to detox before entering rehab. Detox programs are often offered separately from residential rehab, and many facilities have programs to help you transition easily from one stage of treatment to the next. There are various ways to ease the discomfort of detox until withdrawal symptoms subside:
- Medication management with FDA-approved addiction withdrawal medications
- Physical supports such as IV infusions
- Detox counseling
- Case management
- Counseling and holistic wellness practices such as therapeutic yoga or acupuncture
Your experience will vary depending on the severity of your withdrawal symptoms, your health, how long and how much you use a substance, and other individual factors. Detox can be painful and even potentially life-threatening; it’s recommended to undergo the process in a controlled, clinically supervised environment with access to medical care as needed.
When going into drug or alcohol rehab in San Francisco, you’ll receive care for your withdrawal symptoms before being admitted into the general rehab facility. This is to ensure your best chance of recovering. It’s essential to stabilize your body before you move on to the harder psychological work of recovering from addiction.
Outpatient Treatment in San Francisco
If you don’t want to leave your current residence or don’t feel you need the intensive care that residential treatment provides, there are dozens of outpatient programs in the city to accommodate you.
Standard outpatient treatment requires the least time commitment to participate, usually requiring only a few hours of meetings per week in individual therapy or support groups. This type of rehab is perfect for someone in long-term recovery who just needs ongoing counseling and life skills coaching to avoid relapsing
Intensive outpatient programs (IOPs) are more involved than the standard treatment, requiring a few hours of therapy several days a week.
Partial hospitalization programs (PHPs) are the most intensive, with several hours in an inpatient setting each day. Many people enter PHPs after finishing inpatient rehab or detox programs.
Whatever style you decide on, all outpatient rehab programs include services such as support groups, peer counseling, medication management, and regularly scheduled visits with an addictions counselor. You are encouraged to also supplement your outpatient treatment by attending 12-step style meetings like Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous, or alternative programs such as SMART recovery.
Inpatient Rehab Programs
When you find yourself struggling with daily life as a result of your addiction, it may be time to seek inpatient addiction treatment. These programs offer a structured and comfortable environment to keep you at ease, along with medical supervision to ensure health and safety. You can expect treatment through evidence-based therapies to help your mind and body recover from the trauma of addiction and a like-minded community of people also seeking help.
Inpatient rehab can last from a few weeks to up to a year or longer, depending on your desires and the organization you choose. You’ll typically start by completing intake paperwork and going through standard biopsychosocial assessments with the medical team to ensure all of your needs will be met. Your treatment plan will be created according to the findings of your assessment, including:
- Any required medication assistance
- Individual, family, and group therapy schedules
- Drug education and relapse prevention courses
- Aftercare planning
You’ll then be introduced to the community, your lodging for the duration of your recovery, and the dining areas. Some treatment centers provide a wealth of dynamic amenities, such as swimming pools and fitness centers, recreation rooms, and spaces to enjoy sports and exercise.
Dual Diagnosis Treatment
If you’re struggling with mental illness co-occurring with substance abuse, you’ll have a greater chance of recovery in a dual diagnosis rehab facility in San Francisco. These programs are highly trained in psychological issues and have a full staff of mental health-certified counselors and psychiatrists.
While traditional rehab is designed to treat substance use disorders, a co-occurring diagnosis center can help you also navigate mental health disorders with overlapping symptoms and drastically different medical needs. A multidisciplinary team approach is needed for effective relapse prevention.
Online Addiction Care (Telehealth)
Between advances in technology and the need for many people to live in relative isolation through the COVID-19 pandemic, telehealth therapy practices have become increasingly popular and easy to access. Another boon of telehealth addiction therapy is the cost savings. This may explain why, according to studies, about 25% of telehealth services are provided to those with incomes under $25,000.5
Virtual rehab is similar to in-person rehab but done from the comfort of your home through either a webcam or telephone. Traditional evidence-based therapies used during inpatient rehab—such as individual and group therapy, family mediation, and doctor’s appointments—can often be done over the phone or videoconference.
Telehealth addiction treatment can be a great option for someone who has responsibilities that make it hard to take time away to visit a facility routinely, such as those caring for children. It also might mean a lower treatment cost. Not all telehealth services are covered by insurance; make sure to ask your chosen rehab as well as your health insurance provider what you can expect to pay out of pocket for therapy.
Medications for Opioid and Alcohol Addiction
During addiction treatment, your healthcare team might find it appropriate to prescribe certain medications to ease your symptoms as part of medication-assisted treatment (MAT). These medications may include:6,7
Acamprosate: This medication reduces cravings for alcohol and post-acute (long-term) withdrawal symptoms such as anxiety and insomnia.
Disulfiram (Antabuse): Drinking alcohol while taking this medication causes unwanted symptoms that mimic a severe hangover. This helps reduce the craving to drink.
Naltrexone (Revia/Vivitrol): Used to treat both alcohol and opioid addiction, this opioid agonist binds to receptors in the brain and blocks the effects of alcohol and opiates.
Methadone: As a long-acting, full opioid agonist, this medication reduces opioid cravings and withdrawal while blunting or blocking the effects of opioids. Taken daily, it is available in liquid, powder, and wafer forms.
Buprenorphine (Buprenex/Butrans): A partial opioid agonist, this medication is used to treat opioid addiction. It reduces cravings and withdrawal symptoms without producing the same euphoric high associated with full opioid agonists like heroin or methadone.
Buprenorphine/Naloxone (Suboxone, Zubsolv): This medication is used for induction and maintenance treatment of opioid dependence or addiction. Buprenorphine reduces withdrawal symptoms and cravings, while naloxone deters misuse and can reverse opioid overdose.
Mental Health Medications: If you have a dual diagnosis, meaning you are diagnosed with substance use disorder and a co-occurring mental or behavioral condition, medications such as antidepressants, anti-anxiety medications, and mood stabilizers may be prescribed.
In the case of co-occurring mental health and substance abuse disorders, seek out a rehab that can also provide medication for mental health disorders such as bipolar disorder or PTSD.
Types of Drug Rehab in San Francisco, CA
You might want to look for a rehab facility that can meet your lifestyle and social needs that focuses on a community with which you identify.
Those in the LGBTQ+ community face myriad psychosocial difficulties that need special care. They may be experiencing internalized homophobia and transphobia, family conflict, and social exclusion. An LGBTQ-focused rehab can provide the safe space you need to feel comfortable enough to embrace sobriety and recover from your addictions.
If you’re a spiritual person, a religious environment might be helpful in your healing process. Faith-based rehabs incorporate pastoral counseling, group prayer sessions, and other religious activities to encourage sobriety.
Men on the journey to recovery from addiction might find it helpful to participate in a program that caters only to men. A gender-exclusive environment can make it easier to bond with your chosen community’s fellow members and foster new friendships without fearing judgment from those who see men in addiction and rehab as “weak.”
Some women find it easier to engage in addiction treatment, group therapy, and general life in rehab in a women-only environment. Furthermore, some women’s rehab centers allow parents to bring their young children to treatment.
Teenagers have unique challenges. They may be managing family dynamics and coping with school. Teen rehab centers not only address those needs but also provide a supportive community environment where an adolescent can succeed in their recovery.
Young Adult Rehab
Young adults between the ages of 18 and 30 can take part in a rehab program that helps them manage college, career, and relationships while seeking treatment. Rehab for young adults provides professional therapy as well as a community of peers with which to grow.
If recovery in a resort-like environment is a priority, look for a luxury rehab with upscale accommodations, state-of-the-art therapy, and gourmet meals. Different facilities offer varying amenities, but luxury rehabs tend to have a gym, swimming pool, and a masseuse on staff.
Industry professionals, including teachers, doctors, and first responders, might be hesitant to enter treatment for fear of damaging their careers. An executive rehab in San Francisco offers confidential addiction treatment programs for those who feel their job may be threatened.
State-Funded vs. Private Treatment Options in San Francisco
Cost is an important factor when looking for the best way to treat your addiction. State-funded facilities tend to be considerably more affordable than private San Francisco rehabs but generally have less luxurious surroundings and amenities. State-funded rehabs might have more flexibility in financing as well, though both types can offer scholarships and sliding scale fees.
Traveling to San Francisco for Drug and Alcohol Rehab
If you don’t live in San Francisco and you’re seeking rehab, it might be a nice idea to leave your normal surroundings and visit the city to pursue addiction treatment. There are many reasons to seek rehab in San Francisco, including:
- You want a breath of fresh air where you’re free to pursue your journey to recovery without being encumbered by your life at home or feeling judged.
- You’re interested in one of San Francisco’s many high-end treatment centers.
- You want to live in a more progressive area with gorgeous natural surroundings, gentle weather, and easy access to public transportation.
- You have supportive friends or family in the city.
- Your health insurance covers treatment in the area.
San Francisco is beloved for its culture, cuisine, and beautiful scenery. The Mediterranean-like climate provides wet winters and dry summers with little change in temperature between the seasons. You can expect an average year-round temperature of 50-60 degrees, thanks to the area’s unique geography, which brings in cold currents of air and occasional blankets of fog.
Drug and Alcohol Laws in San Francisco
In response to the growing number of people living with substance abuse disorder, California and the city of San Francisco have enacted various policies, laws, and social programs to help.
California Good Samaritan Overdose Prevention Law: Legislation in California protects people who report an overdose and prevents them from being implicated in a drug-related crime. This law was passed in response to the increasing number of overdoses in the state; it was designed to protect those who might be involved in a drug-related crime but are trying to save a life.
The Good Samaritan law protects you from prosecution if you’re found with the illegal substance, provided you aren’t found to have the intent of distributing them. The goal is to relieve the anxiety of a person who is in the presence of an overdose, giving them more incentive to call for emergency medical assistance without fear of repercussions.
The California Ethical Treatment for Persons with Substance Use Disorder Act: This act lays out treatment program requirements to ensure the ethical and respectful treatment of those dealing with addiction. It outlines needs such as individualized treatment plans (ISP), approved evidence-based therapies, dual diagnosis treatment, and the use of credentialed healthcare workers.
Senate Bill 110: An additional treatment bill funded by Medi-Cal, Senate Bill 110, provides incentives to participants for successfully passing a drug urinalysis.
California Family Rights Act (CFRA): Like the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), California offers employment protection to people who need time away for medical reasons under the California Family Rights Act (CFRA). Companies with 25 or more employees must provide up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave to an employee who needs to go into a hospital for treatment, guaranteeing them the same or a similar position when they return.
Proposition 36: Passed in 2000, Proposition 36 gives people with a history of substance abuse a choice between jail time or going to rehab when convicted of a non-violent crime.
How to Choose the Best San Francisco Rehab for You
If you’re searching for “drug rehab(s) near me” or alcohol rehab(s) near me, you’ll notice that San Francisco has a variety of programs to choose from, depending on your preferred lifestyle, favorite location, personal philosophy, and financial situation. When looking for a place to call home while going through rehab, consider the type of housing you prefer—options range from a large community to a smaller, family-style home. You’ll also want to consider whether you have a specific demographic group you want to be part of your therapy.
Cost is a significant consideration for many people. Private health insurance can cover many costs associated with rehab, including therapy and medication, and can be verified by your rehab of choice. You can also look into rehab-funded financing or assistance available from SAMHSA.
Be sure to do your research when seeking a rehab facility that’s right for you. Steps to take include:
- Check out the unique features and amenities of your chosen rehab’s programming.
- Ensure that your chosen community has the peer support you need, whether it’s a specific type of rehab or simply a lifestyle preference.
- Take note of your chosen facility’s visitor policy if seeing your friends and family while in rehab is important for you.
- Read through the facility’s treatment philosophy and mission statement to make sure you’re making the right choice for a successful recovery journey.
A multitude of rehabs in San Francisco can help you meet your recovery goals, whatever your specific preferences and needs. Reach out to one of our professional counselors at 800-926-9037 (Who Answers?) to speak confidentially about the options available near you. We’re standing by 24/7 to help you find addiction treatment.
- California Department of Public Health. (2022). CA Overdose Dashboard.
- City and County of San Francisco, Office of the Chief Medical Officer. (2020). Preliminary Accidental Drug Overdose Data Report.
- Center for Substance Abuse Research. (2020). National Early Drug Warning System. San Francisco Sentinel Community Site (SCS) Drug Use Patterns and Trends, 2020.
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2022). Facility locator.
- Department of Health and Human Services. (2022). National Survey Trends in Telehealth Use in 2021: Disparities in Utilization and Audio vs. Video Services.
- Winslow, B.T. and Hebert, M. (2016). Medications for Alcohol Use Disorder. American Family Physician 93(6): 457-465.
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2022). MAT Medications, Counseling, and Related Conditions.