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J Subst Abuse Treat. 2008 Dec;35(4):462-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jsat.2007.12.008. Epub 2008 Feb 21.

The economic costs of substance abuse treatment: updated estimates and cost bands for program assessment and reimbursement.

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Department of Sociology, University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL 33124-2030, USA.


Federal, state, and local government agencies require current and accurate cost information for publicly funded substance abuse treatment programs to guide program assessments and reimbursement decisions. The Center for Substance Abuse Treatment published a list of modality-specific cost bands for this purpose in 2002. However, the upper and lower values in these ranges are so wide that they offer little practical guidance for funding agencies. Thus, the dual purpose of this investigation was to assemble the most current and comprehensive set of economic cost estimates from the readily available literature and then use these estimates to develop updated modality-specific cost bands for more reasonable reimbursement policies. Although cost estimates were scant for some modalities, the recommended cost bands are based on the best available economic research, and we believe that these new ranges will be more useful to and pertinent for all stakeholders of publicly funded substance abuse treatment.

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