Things to Know Before Going to Out-of-State Alcohol Rehabs

Leaving for out-of-state Alcohol Rehabs

Numerous elements play a pivotal role in deciding what addiction rehabilitation program to enter.

Details such as insurance, costs, accessibility from work or school, and social support take up so much of the patient’s attention that sometimes location does not seem to enter their decision-making process.

However, the decision between staying near home and leaving the state for addiction recovery is a vital element in determining the best treatment which is the right fit for the patient.

Choosing an Out-of-State Rehab

Choosing between out of state and at home treatment programs has been a long-standing debate.

Sometimes deciding to go out of state may be the right choice for patients who are convinced that only distancing themselves from their present environment would enable them to start afresh and focus on recovery.

Contrarily, others believe that staying close to home is the most feasible and suitable option. There are various essential considerations involved, and we will help you walk through the benefits of leaving the state to seek recovery as follows.

1. Escaping an already unhealthy situation – Regardless of the quality of the program and the rehabilitation center, choosing an in-state rehabilitation program may prove to be counterproductive for some patients.

In such cases, being near places and people that the patients associate with substance abuse could present itself as a trigger.

2. Greater privacy and confidentiality – For most patients, undergoing substance abuse rehabilitation is a very personal matter. In most cases, a patient’s social role and responsibilities alongside family and professional obligations are constructed in such a manner that their dependence issues are better kept quiet.

Woman driving out-of-state to alcohol rehab treatment

Deciding upon a local facility may expose the person to additional scrutiny. A lot of times avoiding running into someone familiar is the reason why some people prefer to go out of state.

Research shows that patients are less burdened or distracted if outside influences are removed and they tend to a better job of progressing through treatment.

Removing the concern about privacy may, therefore, provide numerous benefits. [1]

3. Harder to impulsively quit treatment – Entering into a rehabilitation facility is entirely voluntary unless it is court mandated.

If the patient is no longer interested in treatment and wishes to leave, they can just check themselves out and walk out the premises.

Such a course of action is relatively easier when treatment is local, and all you have to do is hitch a ride with a friend and get home in a short while.

Within a few hours, the patient will be back to the same toxic environment. However, in case of an out-of-state rehabilitation center, a person may think twice before quitting if there exist no means to get home immediately.

The distance may delay a rash decision enough for the patient to sit back and think twice before letting the discomfort and a moment of weakness derail the entire progress they may have made.

Numerous patients do not immediately embrace their recovery program and are often caught up in apprehension and fear.

Under such circumstances, the option of leaving may seem increasingly attractive.

4. Minimal distractions – During the process of addiction rehabilitation, it is crucial to maintain focus on the person struggling with the dependence at all times.

Even though various external factors govern addiction, the first and foremost consideration to be attended to is the underlying cause of abuse.

Furthermore, often at times patients focus more on their loved ones and their involvement than their recovery.

Even though it is understandable to want the close contact and support of loved ones during this difficult time, an out-of-state facility can allow the patient no other option but to stop worrying about what is going on at home and just focus on getting better. [1]

Opting for In-State Drug Recovery

Similarly to there being numerous reasons due to which a patient may decide to enlist help from an out-of-state recovery center, there also exist many reasons for them to opt to stay nearby.

Travelling out-of-state for alcohol rehab treatment

For some, in-state treatment works better. It depends on their particular situation.

Some of the more common motives are:

1. Insurance and cost – Often at times, an insurance company is only going to pay for a limited number of options and sometimes out-of-state rehabs are not covered.

If it needs to be decided between paying the majority of the costs out of pocket or having your insurance company pay for it, the choice is easy.

However, it is often a common misconception that insurance companies only pay for in-state treatment. The best way to ascertain such detail is to call and check the specific details of your insurance policy.

2. Integrating your loved ones – It may prove to be extremely beneficial to assimilate your

family or loved ones in the later stages of recovery, principally group therapy and counseling sessions.

Even though Skype and other video conferencing options make it easier than ever before, there is nothing quite like seeing family in person.

Staying in-state can often mean remaining closely connected with these people that can positively impact the whole recovery process.

3. Undertaking discomfort – Going through the rehab process brings changes and often means dealing with challenging psychological and physical elements.

Dealing with these changes is tough, and being in a new location away from familiar surroundings and loved ones can make recovery more difficult.

If an in-state option is chosen, more familiarity and, thus, comfort can be available instead of having the seemingly uninviting or overwhelming factor of an out of state location. [2]

Determining the Right Choice for Yourself

Even though potential benefits are associated to both options, the right choice for you can only be decided through a detailed discussion outlining your personal preferences with a professional.

Some patients will gain more from treatment by staying close to home and their social support system. Meanwhile, others will have a much better shot at success by removing themselves from a toxic environment and seek treatment far away.

Weigh the options that are available to you and make a comprehensive and an all-inclusive, rational decision. [3]

Sana Ahmed photoAbout the Author:

A journalist and social media savvy content writer with wide research, print and on-air interview skills, Sana Ahmed has previously worked as staff writer for a renowned rehabilitation institute focusing on mental health and addiction recovery, a content writer for a marketing agency, an editor for a business magazine and been an on-air news broadcaster.

Sana graduated with a Bachelors in Economics and Management from London School of Economics and began a career of research and writing right after. The art of using words to educate, stir emotions, create change and provoke action is at the core of her career, as she strives to develop content and deliver news that matters.



The opinions and views of our guest contributors are shared to provide a broad perspective of addictions. These are not necessarily the views of Addiction Hope, but an effort to offer discussion of various issues by different concerned individuals.

We at Addiction Hope understand that addictions result from a combination of environmental and genetic factors. If you or a loved one are suffering from an addiction, please know that there is hope for you, and seek immediate professional help.

Published on January 3, 2018
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About Jacquelyn Ekern, MS, LPC

Jacquelyn Ekern founded Addiction Hope in January, 2013, after experiencing years of inquiries for addiction help by visitors to our well regarded sister site, Eating Disorder Hope. Many of the eating disorder sufferers that contact Eating Disorder Hope also had a co-occurring issue of addiction to alcohol, drugs, and process addictions.