Even though Alaska is the largest state of the U.S. with 663,267 square miles, it is also one of the least populated with only about 648,818 residents. Just like the rest of the country, drug addiction is an issue in the state. From bigger cities like Anchorage to smaller towns and communities, there are people who wake up every day to a life of addiction and need help. In 2016, it was reported that Alaska’s drug overdose rate was higher than the national average at 128 drug overdose deaths, which is the highest this number has been in the state since 2009. It is even estimated that Alaska, in spite of it being disconnected from the mainland of the country, has the highest number of illicit drug users in the whole country. Thankfully, there are several forms of insurance coverage that can help cover the costs of treatment.
Insurance Coverage for Drug Rehab in Alaska
There are several different types of health insurance available in Alaska, including those that are purchased through employers and by the individual who needs coverage. Alaska also has Medicaid available for individuals who meet certain guidelines and some state-funded resources for helping people who need drug addiction treatment.
State-Funded Resources for Drug Rehab Coverage in Alaska
Alaska does have a Medicaid expansion program that you may qualify for if you cannot afford to pay for private insurance, and Medicaid will pay for addiction treatment. Expansion Medicaid programs use a modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) to determine your eligibility for coverage, and the parameters are slightly higher than with traditional Medicaid.
Traditional Medicaid is only available for people who have a low income and are pregnant, disabled, or responsible for caring for children. To qualify for traditional Medicaid, for example, a household of three family members must have an annual income less than $33,516. You must also be an Alaskan state resident to receive Medicaid, whether traditional or with the expansion program.
Additionally, some residents of native descent may qualify for help from Native Health Services to help pay for their addiction treatment if they do not have private insurance coverage. Native Health Services is available for low-income natives who need specific assistance with certain forms of healthcare, and the help may be given on a case-by-case basis.
Alaska Parity Laws
Some states have what is known as parity laws, which essentially means insurance providers may be legally bound to treat mental health conditions, including addiction, just as other illnesses and should be covered the same. Unfortunately, Alaska is not a state that has parity laws in place. Therefore, not all health insurance providers are required to provide coverage for addiction treatment.
Alaska Health Insurance Providers
When it comes to insurance plans from major providers, Alaska has no shortage of choices. Multiple companies offer private and employer-provided insurance options and many do have benefits for addiction treatment. Most insurers offer PPO plans, but some do operate as an HMO. Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) and a Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) differ because HMOs tend to allow you to visit only specific doctors, while PPOs give you more flexibility with where you get treatment.
Aetna only covers mental conditions that are biological and severe in nature with their AK PPO 2500 plan. While this coverage will not pay for treatment for addiction, some of your other treatments may be covered if you are dually diagnosed with a secondary mental illness. This will apply after the $2,500 deductible has been met and the 20 percent copay is paid. However, Aetna medical insurance may cover some expenses associated with your treatment, such as drug addiction treatment with the use of prescription medications.
John Alden Health Insurance
John Alden Health Insurance is a health insurance product offered to small business employers by Assurant Health who are looking for a good package for their team. Therefore, you may have John Alden if you have purchased insurance through your employer. This company provides several coverage options, including a 50, 80, and 100-percent plan. Mental health services are covered by John Alden, and the percentage covered depends on which plan you choose. For example, if you have the 50-percent plan, your insurance will cover 50 percent of costs after deductible for both inpatient and outpatient treatment.
CeltiCare is available in Alaska in two primary forms: Any Doc and Managed Indemnity. CeltiCare is great because it allows you to pick and choose different deductibles and coverage amounts to fit your budget. The provider offers high-deductible HSA indemnity plans for those who want coverage not connected to a network of providers. Even better, CeltiCare does cover mental and substance abuse services.
Premera has four different coverage plans to choose from, including Safeguard, All Access, peak, and HSA, and they offer private insurance plans as well as employer-sponsored plans. Some of these plans do cover mental health and substance abuse treatment. For example, when you opt for the Heritage Provider Network, you will have a $1,500 deductible, and 30 percent of inpatient and outpatient services will be covered.
Time/Assurant Health Insurance
Once known as Assurant Health, Time insurance has coverage for individuals and families, as well as businesses. One of the greatest advantages of Time is it gives you access to a larger network of doctors and care providers. Unfortunately, Time does not have coverage for mental health services, including addiction treatment. However, some components of treatment may be covered, such as medical detox or prescription therapy.
More Insurance Options For Alabama Drug Rehab
Drug-Specific Treatment Covered For Alaska Drug Rehab
One of the most common concerns from those seeking treatment is whether their insurance will cover addiction to certain forms of substances. For example, it is often assumed that insurance providers treat an addiction to meth, marijuana, alcohol, or other substance in different ways and will only cover drug-specific addiction treatment. However, normally, there is no stipulation with health insurance that will state which forms of addiction are covered. Generally speaking, if the health insurance you have specifies that it does cover addiction treatment, your treatment will be covered as outlined no matter what type of substance addiction you may have.
Addiction Treatment Available in Alaska
Alaska has much to offer patients who are seeking a life of sobriety, so finding a treatment method that works for your situation should be easy. Some examples of the types of treatment you can find with upstanding facilities and therapy providers in Alaska include:
- Medically-supervised detox facilities
- Intensive inpatient programs
- Luxury or private inpatient drug treatment programs
- Addiction treatment and therapy with a holistic approach
- Dual diagnosis treatment for addiction combined with mental illness
- Outpatient addiction therapy programs
- Sober living facilities
- Outpatient addiction treatment with prescription aids
If you or a family member is struggling with an addiction to drugs or alcohol in Alaska, you should know that there are many resources available. Seeking recovery from addiction can be scary, but having so many coverage options available and so many different forms of treatment available should make the process easier if you live in the state of Alaska.
Benefits.gov – Alaska Medicaid
Celtic Care Health – Health Benefits
John Alden Health – Alaska
Indian Health Service – Alaska