Can Obamacare change the face of addiction treatment?

Can Obamacare change the face of addiction treatment?

This is a subject I know little about as I live in the UK these days and have insurance that covers me when I am in the USA. However, it does seem that many do not have access to great treatment solutions on both sides of the pond, especially if they do not have a great deal of money. Also, a lot of the treatment does not seem that great, or does not suit a lot of the people who need it.

I was sent this from an organisation in the USA that have set up a web page questioning the approach, and so I will copy the information they have provided here. they are a 12 step based organisation which is not really my preferred solution, but seem to make some good points on their website.


here is the content of their email.

Since the Affordable Care Act (ACA) became effective March 2010, with Obamacare open enrollment launching October of last year, one of the most pertinent questions often associated with the ACA is can Obamacare change the face of addiction treatment? Its a burning question as prior to the ACA being signed US citizens who had faced  addiction struggled to pay for the services they needed to recover. Did you know that 38.2% of Americans living with addiction couldn’t get care because they lacked health care coverage? The US Department of Health and Services believe the ACA can make a tremendous impact, giving 27 million people with no insurance covered through the ACA. But with this cloud of potential circling the ACA and its bright future towards addiction reform is it merely just a smoke screen?

To help better understand this divisive topic FRN with their partner Michael’s House, a nationally recognized drug and rehab center in the US, have created a website ( detailing the potential effect Obamacare will have towards addiction treatment. Detailed with charts and info graphics, the website goes into detail about the following:

-The impact of the ACA and the millions of people that will get treatment to help their addiction
-The controversies associated with standardized care and the bend and flex that comes with it -i.e. the actual treatment that you want and deserve vs. the actual treatment that your plan can only provide you)
With the tax subsidies is it too expensive to sign up for Obamacare to get treatment?
-Even if you have found the right provider/plan without are you truly benefiting or is someone else like drug companies reaping into the reward?


As I said at the top I am not really qualified to comment on this at all but am interested to see if things will change and if more evidence based solutions are used which often suit many better that traditional solutions. This article from the Huffington Post seems to think that Obamacare could really change things


Things certainly need to advance as most countries have their head in the sand about addiction treatment and do not make it a priority.

This link to a Times piece points out many of the problems with treatment such as the traditional methods and this is certainly something to look at. many addiction counsellors both 12 step and non 12 step are pretty useless and poorly qualified.

This post seems to think it could end up overwhelming the system


I have read more on the subject since writing this and have another post here


Commenting area

  1. What do you gleen from these articles Lovinglife as far as how it looks like it will impact 12 step programs?

  2. I am not sure what will happen to be honest! I hope that people in the 12 step world will question parts of the program and the safety issues and do something about them as they have such a huge infrastructure, but in reality I expect nothing much to change!
    I put this link and a few thoughts on the fix piece on my webnews section

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