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Drug Treatment Facts & Statistics

Drug treatment comprises a wide range of services offered to those who abuse or are addicted to drugs, alcohol, or tobacco. Treatment is available in many settings, where behavioral approaches and pharmacological treatment is used. Additionally, both short- and long-term treatment options are available through residential treatment centers, outpatient programs, and inpatient care. In reality, drug and alcohol addiction is a major problem worldwide that impacts nearly everyone at some point, whether directly or indirectly. Addiction is taxing for families, communities, law enforcement, governments, and medical personnel. The social and economic impacts of addiction are far-reaching and can be devastating.

Drug Treatment Approaches

Treatment approaches vary widely throughout the U.S. Programs and services provided to treat substance abuse and addiction include:

  • Medical detox
  • Counseling and behavioral
  • 12-step approach
  • Pharmaceutical therapy
  • Education
  • Employment services
  • Rapid detox

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The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) said there are more than 11,000 specialized drug treatment facilities in the U.S., providing

  • rehabilitation
  • counseling
  • behavioral therapy
  • medical services
  • case management.

Since abuse and addiction are major health problems, many treatment facilities are funded through local, state, and federal governments. In many cases, it is a concerted effort between governments, law enforcement, counselors, healthcare providers, social workers, and mental health experts.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) performed a treatment study between 1996 and 2006 to provide information on the demographics and characteristics of substance use and abuse. SAMHSA, a division of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, studied the 1.8 million admissions to treatment for abuse of alcohol and other drugs by reporting facilities. As a result, the agency found that five substances account for 96% of those admissions. They are:

  • Alcohol (40%)
  • Opiates (18%)
  • Marijuana (16%)
  • Cocaine (14%)
  • Stimulants (9%).

Meanwhile, for the U.S. as a whole, SAMHSA found admission rates for opiates other than heroin increased 314% between 1996 and 2006.


The long-term goal of drug treatment is to achieve sustained sobriety. Unfortunately, since relapse rates are high for many drugs, it may take several episodes of treatment to get there. Whereas, NIDA said the goal for treatment is not only lasting sobriety but also to help individuals function better and become productive members of society again. According to the institute, untreated substance abuse and addiction are costly for society due to factors including:

  • violence
  • property crimes
  • prison expenses
  • court and criminal costs
  • emergency room
  • healthcare costs
  • child abuse and
  • lost child support
  • foster care
  • welfare costs
  • reduced productivity
    and unemployment.

The cost to society of illicit drug abuse alone is $181 billion annually,” NIDA reports, explaining that when combined with alcohol and tobacco use, that cost rises to $500 billion a year.

However, individuals seeking the most advanced drug treatment for opiate abuse worldwide will find it at the Waismann Method. We are located exclusively in Southern California and have one location. Consequently, we are constantly evolving and improving our drug treatment programs, as well as setting higher standards for others in the drug addiction field. Our staff is fully committed and dedicated to providing the highest quality of care in a professional and caring environment.

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