Opioid addiction is a chronic, relapsing brain disease that affects millions of Americans and produces a tremendous burden on the healthcare system. In 2002, U.S. physicians gained the opportunity to treat opioid-addicted patients with buprenorphine in primary care settings, commonly referred to as office-based opioid treatment (OBOT). OBOT has been shown to be effective in primary care settings and impacts public health through the reduction of opioid use, opioid overdose mortality and transmission of infectious diseases. However, it remains underutilized.
One consistently cited barrier preventing OBOT expansion is lack of adequate clinical support given the additional needs for patient monitoring. Successful medication-assisted treatment (MAT) requires a team-based approach just like treatment for other chronic diseases. In addition, treatment is more effective when providers can use a trauma-informed and gender-responsive treatment plan.
The goal of this companion program to the AAAP Clinical Support System: Buprenorphine Office-Based Treatment for Opioid Use Disorders (The “Half and Half” Course) is to increase the comfort level and expertise of the healthcare team by outlining a team approach, trauma-informed interventions, gender-responsive care, and recommendations for implementation of buprenorphine OBOT.