330,000 Texas Addicts Newly Eligible For Treatment

Apr 16, 2013

Federal statistics show the Affordable Care Act would make more than 330,000 Texans eligible for addiction treatment next year, but the state's addiction treatment centers are already at 92 percent capacity.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration reports that only 86,000 Texans are getting help. But if the state expands Medicaid — something that Gov. Rick Perry opposes — an additional 250,000 addicts could seek treatment offered under the health program.

This could place a load on treatment centers in Texas, which count less than 6,500 beds.

State lawmakers have been among the most progressive in the country, establishing diversion programs for drug addicts who commit crime to keep them out of prison. The Texas Senate has also approved legislation adding $30 million over the next two years.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.