RICHMOND, Va. -- More than 100,000 uninsured Virginia residents with drug and alcohol addictions will become eligible for insurance when the federal health care overhaul goes into effect next year.
An Associated Press analysis of government data finds that about 9 percent of Virginians need treatment for substance abuse. Of those 559,000 people, only 65,000 are currently getting treatment.
Once the Affordable Care Act kicks in, an estimated 100,695 addicts would be newly eligible for insurance. That number would rise to 172,490 addicts if the state expands Medicaid.
Nationally, the number of people seeking treatment could double and treatment agencies say that could swamp the system before even half of the newly insured show up at the door.
About 93 percent of the 957 beds at Virginia treatment facilities already are occupied.
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