Barriers to Alcoholism Treatment


Report Explores Barriers to Treatment

Although people recognize that they have a problem with alcohol, a survey finds that many don’t seek treatment because they’re not ready to stop using, according to the US Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

The SAMHSA report, “Reasons for Not Receiving Substance Abuse Treatment,” also found that many people fail to seek out treatment because they think they can’t afford it.

Of the 761,000 individuals who recognized that they needed treatment for alcohol addiction, 49 percent were not ready to stop drinking and 40 percent thought the cost of treatment was prohibitive.

“It is tragic that a major reason people continue to abuse alcohol is that they do not believe they can afford appropriate treatment,” said SAMHSA Administrator Charles G. Curie. “President Bush has proposed a three year ‘Access to Recovery’ program to provide $200 million more each year for substance-abuse treatment. This program would provide someone in need of substance-abuse treatment with a voucher to pay for the services. We really need this program if we are to provide treatment to the large numbers who say they cannot afford it.”

The report was developed from SAMHSA’s National Survey on Drug Use and Health.



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