In the not so distant past, treatment for alcoholism would have required a person to stay in hospital for an unknown period of time. Today, a number of treatments for alcoholism exist that do not require a person to stay in hospital at all. There are lots of different types of programs, some involve the person committing for a couple of hours a day over several weeks, while others require up to 20 hours of attendance a week over an indefinite amount of time. If the person is considered low-risk, to both themselves and others, outpatient care under the supervision of a doctor is usually the best course of treatment. Inpatient programs usually take place in a physiatrist hospital, although some general hospitals run them too. There are lots of different types of programs, some involve the person committing for a couple of hours a day over several weeks. There are also specialist alcohol addiction treatment centers, which offer the same services as a hospital. Individuals who are usually recommended for inpatient treatment are usually those who are suffering severe withdrawals or who have had several failed rehabilitation attempts in the past. If the person suffers from a psychiatric disorder or comes from a family of alcoholics, inpatient care is usually a wise option. Inpatient care usually involves a medically supervised detoxification, which is managed with the use of medication. Cognitive behavioral therapy and an introduction to outside support groups are also an integral part of the alcoholism treatment. People who receive outpatient care will generally undergo the same treatment as those who are admitted for inpatient treatment, although the detoxification medication will vary.
Under the Affordable Care Act and the Mental Health Parity Act, rehabilitation centers are able to bill insurance companies for substance abuse treatment. With long wait lists in limited state-funded rehabilitation centers, controversial private centers rapidly emerged. One popular model, known as the Florida Model for rehabilitation centers, is often criticized for fraudulent billing to insurance companies. Under the guise of helping patients with opioid addiction, these centers would offer addicts free rent or up to $500 per month to stay in their "sober homes", then charge insurance companies as high as $5,000 to $10,000 per test for simple urine tests. Little attention is paid to patients in terms of addiction intervention as these patients have often been known to continue drug use during their stay in these centers. Since 2015, these centers have been under federal and state criminal investigation. As of 2017 in California, there are only 16 investigators in the CA Department of Health Care Services investigating over 2,000 licensed rehab centers.
Getting alcohol out of the addicted person’s system is the first part of recovery. People with a severe alcohol addiction can experience intense withdrawal symptoms. A supervised alcohol detox is usually necessary for people addicted to alcohol to prevent potentially fatal complications. Shaking, sweating, seizures, and hallucinations are possible alcohol withdrawal symptoms. Woman Turns to Rehab After Struggling With Drugs, Alcohol: Part 1