HHS Takes Steps To Increase Access to Opioid Use Disorder Treatment Medication
Proposed change would allow physicians to prescribe buprenorphine to more patients.
HHS is proposing a new rule to allow physicians to prescribe the opioid use disorder treatment medication buprenorphine to an increased number of patients. The proposed change is designed to strike a balance between expanding access to this important treatment, encouraging use of evidence-based medication-assisted treatment (MAT), and minimizing the risk of drug diversion.
If adopted, the proposal would allow for a qualified and currently waivered physician to prescribe buprenorphine for up to 200 patients. Buprenorphine is a U.S. Food and Drug Administration-approved drug used as part of MAT, a comprehensive way to address the recovery needs of individuals that combines the use of medication with counseling and behavioral therapies to treat substance use disorders. Buprenorphine—because of its lower potential for abuse—is permitted to be prescribed or dispensed in physician offices, significantly increasing its availability to many patients. When taken as prescribed, buprenorphine is safe and effective.
HHS welcomes public comment on this proposed rule, which will be open for 60 days starting Wednesday, March 30, 2016.
|Review and Comment on the Proposed Rule|
Those seeking help with an opioid or other substance use disorder can contact SAMHSA's National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357) to receive information on how to get treatment and support services.