employee drug abuse

How to Seek Addiction Treatment and Keep Your Job

When a person develops an addiction, it typically comes at a very high cost. Many addicts lose their relationships, financial independence, jobs, homes, or ever their lives. With substance abuse becoming an increasingly central part of one’s life, all of one’s other responsibilities become much less important, falling by the wayside until they’re lost or destroyed altogether. With regard to career, many addicts try to maintain their jobs because it’s their source of income and, by extension, their source for obtaining mind-altering substances.

Unfortunately, more often than not, an addict will lose his or her job before he or she finally chooses to seek treatment. In many cases, the individuals don’t want to pursue recovery options because they don’t want to have to explain their absences from work and out themselves as being addicts. It seems that many are unaware that it’s possible to overcome an addiction without sacrificing one’s job in the process. The tips below will allow someone with substance abuse issues to seek addiction treatment while keeping his or her job.

Step 1: Contact your primary care physician immediately

It’s often said that admitting the problem is the first step of recovery, and that’s certainly the case at present. When a person realizes that his or her substance abuse habit will soon cost his or her job and that treatment is necessary in order to keep it, the first thing to do is to contact one’s primary care physician or a doctor. A doctor is an optimal resource when a person is in dire need of treatment as soon as possible. The doctor or physician can do an assessment in order to determine the severity of the addiction so that he or she can recommend the right form of addiction treatment.

Step 2: Open a line of communication with human resources

After seeing one’s physician and having him or her help with choosing the right form of treatment, the next step is to open a line of communication with the human resources department at one’s place of employment. Having already arranged to use a workday to see a doctor, one needs to tell human resources that he or she is experiencing a medical emergency and will require the day off.

At this point, one won’t likely be asked to explain more than this, but it would be a good idea to ask for a specific point of contact at the human resources department, which is beneficial as it’ll be a single person who will know about one’s situation and only one person to have to update. Having a single point of contact will also give a person the option of explaining the situation in a little more depth, and due to federal employment laws the contact should know that he or she is unable to divulge specific information about a medical or family emergency.

Additionally, taking this day off means having an entire weekday to make all the necessary arrangements and preparations. It’s important for the following steps to take place during the day on a weekday as that’s when rehabs and related organizations have business hours.

Step 3: Find a detox or treatment center

Once the day off work has been cleared, the next step is to begin finding a drug treatment center. This may seem like a daunting process that would require much more time than a single day. In most cases, that would be correct; however, resources such as Drug Treatment Center Finder make finding the right rehab for one’s needs as simple as a phone call and a brief over-the-phone consultation with one of our recovery coordinators. In effect, we distil the dozens of hours that a person would likely put into finding, researching, and choosing a rehab into a single conversation over the phone.

Step 4: Contact your health insurance provider

With the detox or treatment facility chosen, it’s important to contact one’s health insurance provider so that he or she can be absolutely certain that treatment at the recovery facility will be covered by the insurance. Even though most facilities explicitly state which insurance providers they accept, it’s always a good idea to check coverage from the other end by contacting one’s insurance provider and making sure that they will cover treatment at one’s chosen facility.

Step 5: Make arrangements for a leave of absence (optional)

Since keeping one’s job is the goal of these steps, it’s important to make arrangements with one’s employer to have the necessary amount of time off from work if it’s been decided that he or she needs an inpatient or residential program. Depending on the length of time, this could mean taking a week or two of vacation time, or it could also mean taking a leave of absence (LOA). However, if the leave of absence is unpaid, the individual will can file for short-term disability assistance until he or she returns to work.

Again, this is where having a single point of contact at the human resources will be extremely beneficial. It would be best to keep the details to a minimum because, even though seeking addiction treatment shouldn’t mean losing one’s job, taking that possibility out of the equation will be less stressful. It’s illegal for companies to ask for or require more detail than what is necessary, so if taking a leave of absence due to a medical emergency is quite enough, one could simply tell them that he or she, or his or her physician, will maintain contact with human resources contact to keep him or her updated during the leave of absence.

However, one will likely be expected to provide an approximate amount of time that he or she will be out of work, and it’s best to be as accurate as possible; for instance, if an individual is attending a 28-day program he or she should add one or two days on each side to account for travel, telling his or her employer that he or she will be on a leave of absence for 32 days. Additionally, if an individual isn’t enrolling in an inpatient or residential program, he or she may not require an extended leave of absence and, therefore, could probably skip this step.

Step 6: Explore opportunities for financial assistance (optional)

At this point, all the other preparations have been made: the rehab has been chosen, insurance coverage has been confirmed, and time off work has been arranged. The last major step in the process is ensuring that one has a means of paying for the treatment. It’s possible that one’s insurance coverage will make this step unnecessary, but for individuals who either don’t have health insurance and those whose health insurance plans cover only a part of treatment, it will be necessary to secure supplemental funding if he or she is unable to pay the remaining balance out of pocket.

For those who require financial assistance, there are a number of state-funded scholarships and grants, many of which are need-based, for which one can apply. In many cases, these are revolving scholarships, which means that they’re awarded throughout the year. Many treatment facilities often offer their own financial assistance as well, either by awarding funds or offering a need-based sliding pay scale, making treatment much more affordable to those who need it.

Take back your independence — call Drug Treatment Center Finder today

Current statistics show that only one in ten addicts receive the treatment they need to recovery. We find that unacceptable, which is why Drug Treatment Center Finder can match anyone suffering from alcoholism or drug addiction to the treatments they need to get sober. For a free consultation, call Drug Treatment Center Finder at 1-855-619-8070. With just one phone call, you or a loved one can take the first step on the journey of lifelong health and happiness.