Surgery, Buprenorphine, and Patients in Recovery from Opioid Use Disorder

With the reintroduction of powerful narcotic opioids to manage acute pain, surgery can be a make-or-break time for patients in recovery from opioid use disorder (OUD). For those using buprenorphine as part of their recovery process, the stress, anxiety and risk can be amplified if, as is often the case, they are directed to stop using the buprenorphine ahead of their surgery.

Scaling the Model of Care for Patients with Opioid Use Disorder

Data show that concurrent with the opioid overdose crisis, there has been an increase in hospitalizations of people with opioid use disorder (OUD). One in ten of these hospitalized medical or surgical patients have comorbid opioid-related diagnoses.

Study Finds Improvement for Those Receiving Medication for Opioid Use Disorder With Contingency Management Used

A systematic review and meta-analysis found that using contingency management (CM) at end-of-treatment improved outcomes on six common clinical problems during medication for OUD (MOUD): psychomotor stimulant use, polysubstance use, illicit-opioid use, cigarette smoking, therapy attendance, and medication adherence.

Co-locating Contraceptive Services & Opioid Treatment Programs May Help Prevent Unintended Pregnancy

More than 75% of women with Opioid Use Disorder report having had an unintended pregnancy, but they are less likely to use effective contraception compared to women who do not use drugs. Results from a multi-year trial found that a two-part intervention featuring co-located contraceptive services in opioid treatment programs and financial incentives could offer an effective solution.

Secret Shopper Study Sheds Light on Barriers to Opioid Treatment for Women

After a 2020 Vanderbilt University Medical Center study showed women have a difficult time accessing treatment for opioid use disorder (OUD), investigators analyzed comments received from the study’s participants to further shed light on barriers to care, which included everything from long on-hold times to difficult interactions with clinic receptionists during phone calls seeking appointments.

Medication Access for Opioid Use Disorder Lower Among Those Involved with Criminal Justice System

Among people with opioid use disorder (OUD), more than half have reported contact with the criminal justice system. A new study published today in Health Affairs reveals that Medicaid expansion is associated with substantial improvements in access to medications for OUD. However, the study also reveals that individuals referred for treatment by the criminal justice system were substantially less likely to receive medications for OUD as part of the treatment plan.

Foundation for Opioid Response Efforts (FORE) Announces Grants Totaling $1.3 Million to Assess Impact of COVID-19 on Opioid Use Disorder Treatment and Equity

The coronavirus pandemic has led to several temporary regulatory relaxations and policy innovations in treatment for opioid use disorder aimed at making it easier for those seeking care to access treatment without risking in-person interactions. The Foundation for Opioid Response Efforts (FORE) today announced it is providing grants totaling $1.3 million to six organizations to assess the impact of these temporary measures and inform future policies to improve access and promote equity for the treatment of opioid use disorder.

Analysis finds gaps in care in treating opioid use disorders during pandemic shutdowns

Study finds no decrease in prescription fills or clinician visits in the first three months of the COVID-19 pandemic for patients recently receiving opioid use disorder therapy.
On the flip side, the study found that during this period fewer people started new treatment for opioid use disorder and fewer urine tests were given across both new and established patients.
Findings identify strengths and weaknesses in telemedicine’s role for opioid use disorder during shutdowns and can inform strategies for improvement.

Opioid Use Disorder? Electronic Health Records Help Pinpoint Probable Patients

A new study suggests that patients with opioid use disorder may be identified using information available in electronic health records, even when diagnostic codes do not reflect this diagnosis. The study demonstrates the utility of proxies coding for DSM-5 criteria from medical records to generate a quantitative DSM-5 score that is associated with opioid use disorder severity. The study methods are unique in deriving a severity score that aims to mirror severity scores from more traditional interview-based diagnostic procedures.

Patients’ Access to Opioid Treatment Cumbersome

The “secret shopper” study used trained actors attempting to get into treatment with an addiction provider in 10 U.S. states. The results, with more than 10,000 unique patients, revealed numerous challenges in scheduling a first-time appointment to receive medications for opioid use disorder, including finding a provider who takes insurance rather than cash.

HEALing Communities Strategy Fast-Tracked Due to COVID-19

When Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear announced the early release of some Kentucky inmates due to COVID-19 concerns, the team behind the HEALing Communities Study worked quickly to fast-track one of the evidence-based practices for preventing opioid deaths that was due to launch later this year: the distribution of naloxone to individuals at highest risk for overdose, particularly those being released from local jails.

Nearly One-Third of Primary Care Providers Do Not View Medication Treatment for Opioid Use Disorder as Effective

A new survey of U.S. primary care physicians from researchers at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health found that nearly one-third, 32.9 percent, do not think treating opioid use disorder with medication is any more effective than treatment without medication.

Study Reveals Pharmacy-level Barriers to Treatment for Opioid Use Disorder in Appalachian Kentucky

A new study led by University of Kentucky researcher April Young and Emory University researcher Hannah Cooper shows that a number of pharmacies in the Appalachian region of Kentucky are limiting the dispensing of buprenorphine, a medication used to treat opioid use disorder (OUD).

Medication Treatments Led to 80 Percent Lower Risk of Fatal Overdose for Patients with Opioid Use Disorder than Medication-free Treatments

Patients with opioid use disorder (OUD) receiving treatment with opioid agonists (medications such as methadone or buprenorphine) had an 80 percent lower risk of dying from an opioid overdose compared to patients in treatment without the use of medications.

Most Youths Surviving Opioid Overdose Not Getting Timely Treatment to Avoid Recurrence

A study of more than 4 million Medicaid claims records during a recent seven-year period concludes that less than a third of the nearly 3,800 U.S. adolescents and young adults who experienced a nonfatal opioid overdose got timely (within 30 days) follow-up addiction treatment to curb or prevent future misuse and reduce the risk of a second overdose.