Rehab Centers & Addiction Treatment in Singapore

Singapore is a thriving global financial hub that is renowned for its conservatism and strict local laws. A hard-line approach has arguably served Singapore well, but the system also has its share of casualties. Illegal drug use in Singapore can have serious consequences for those on the wrong side of the law. Drug users hoping to recover get little sympathy. If you decide to see a doctor for help with substance abuse, the doctor may be legally obliged to report you to the police.

Alcohol Rehab in Singapore

Alcohol addiction is a chronic condition where people drink uncontrollably despite all the negative effects their drinking has on their lives and the people around them. It can destroy finances, relationships, work, and both physical and mental health.

Even though Singapore has a reduced rate of alcohol consumption compared to other developed nations, the problem of binge drinking and alcohol abuse is a growing problem – particularly amongst the young adult population.

It is surprising how few treatment options there are for alcoholics in Singapore. With a thriving expat population and availability of alcohol as part of “work-life”, there is a largely unreported problem of alcohol misuse and abuse in Singapore.

If you search on Google for Alcohol Rehab in Singapore you will see a list of rehab clinics (usually not even in Singapore) trying to attract the mostly wealthy clientele to luxury and high-end rehabs charging US$15,000 ($20,000+ SGD) for 1 month.

While the cost of treatment in Thailand or Bali is less than that found in the UK or Australia, the competitive nature of the rehab industry has in recent years allowed some “unscrupulous” operators to try and cash in on the lucrative market of Singapore.

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Drug Rehab in Singapore

Drug addiction is a growing problem in Singapore despite the squeaky clean image and the zero tolerance approach to illicit drugs. Illicit drug use is a criminal offence and punished with a prison sentence. This means there is a certain stigma related to drug use within Singaporean society.

The Misuse of Drugs Act (MDA) permits the police to search anyone they suspect of drug trafficking or drug use without asking the court for a warrant. The police can ask anyone to perform a urinalysis; not taking the test is seen as a presumption of guilt.

Those convicted of drug trafficking are often sentenced to death. The MDA empowers the Central Narcotics Bureau (CNB) to commit a drug user for treatment in a drug rehabilitation centre for between 6 and 36 months.

Singapore has limited options for the treatment of drug addiction and most users of illicit or prescription drugs who require treatment will look overseas for private treatment programs. Thailand is the leading destination and has an established addiction recovery market and close proximity to Singapore.

The Wrong Approach to Treating Drug Addiction?

The government has prioritized the War on Drugs but done little to provide proper rehabilitation programs for drug users and addicts.

Drug addiction is considered to be a moral failing rather than as a disease in Singapore. This means many addicts try to hide their condition as much as possible and go underground. For this reason, many local and international experts have called for a more humane treatment of drug addicts.

Police on streets of Singapore

Estimates of Drug Use in Singapore

It is difficult to get accurate statistics on drug use in Singapore. According to the Central Narcotics Bureau the most commonly abused substances are:

  • 77% Methamphetamine
  • 12% Cannabis
  • 9% Heroin
  • 2% Other drugs including 
ecstasy, ketamine, cocaine

Medical Tourism and Healthcare Travel for Treatment

Like all developed nations, Singapore has residents who face addictions ranging from alcoholism, substance abuse and behavioral disorders like gambling. As a regional travel hub, it is quite easy to travel to another country for help with addictive behaviors. Addiction treatment overseas enables addicts to overcome addictive behaviors in a private and confidential setting under the supervision of medical and psychological professionals.

Did you know?

It is important to find a treatment program that can address the individual needs of the person seeking help. A good rehab center should create an individualized treatment plan that is supervised by qualified addiction professionals

The Best Choice for the Treatment of Alcohol and Drug Addiction

Addiction is a disease that has to be treated with the right combination of discipline, compassion and therapy. Intensive treatment should be supervised by trained doctors, therapists and other addiction specialists.

There are local services available in Singapore that can help with a range of addictions. They range from private outpatient clinics like The Cabin Singapore to community services like We Care who treat all forms of addictions including drugs, alcohol, and compulsive behaviors.

The National Addiction Management Service (NAMS) provides services to both residents and non-residents. NAMS is a multidisciplinary team of addiction experts who offer a range of confidential services (in accordance to IMH policy) to meet individual needs. Services include assessments, inpatient detox programs and aftercare support groups for clients and their families.

If you have the financial resources to travel overseas for inpatient treatment, you can access one of Asia’s leading residential addiction treatment and recovery centers. World-class residential treatment facilities can be found primarily in Thailand but also in Bali and Malaysia. In some instances it may be necessary to undertake a medically assisted detox before entering into an inpatient treatment program. Most rehabs offer detox services onsite or at a partner hospital.


Singapore law requires doctors to inform the CNB if they treat someone who has a drug addiction. The CNB is then able to act on that information and can question the patient. The CNB says that they will continue taking action against drug abusers but will work with parents and community members to properly educate people on the dangers of drug abuse.

If you or someone you know is facing negative consequences from addiction or compulsive behaviors, the team at Rehabs Asia can give you 100% confidential and independent advice. We can help you find the best treatment for your individual circumstances and budget.

Want to know more? Contact us for up-to-date information on rehab center availability and pricing.