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1.
J Subst Abuse Treat ; 133: 108492, 2022 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1253265

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Telemedicine-delivered buprenorphine (tele-buprenorphine) can potentially increase access to buprenorphine for patients with opioid use disorder (OUD), especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, but we know little about use in clinical care. METHODS: This study was a retrospective national cohort study of veterans diagnosed with opioid use disorder (OUD) receiving buprenorphine treatment from the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) in fiscal years 2012-2019. The study examined trends in use of tele-buprenorphine and compared demographic and clinical characteristics in patients who received tele-buprenorphine versus those who received in-person treatment only. RESULTS: Utilization of tele-buprenorphine increased from 2.29% of buprenorphine patients in FY2012 (n = 187) to 7.96% (n = 1352) in FY2019 in VHA veterans nationally. Compared to patients receiving only in-person care, tele-buprenorphine patients were less likely to be male (AOR = 0.85, 95% CI: 0.73-0.98) or Black (AOR = 0.54, 95% CI: 0.45-0.65). Tele-buprenorphine patients were more likely to be treated in community-based outpatient clinics rather than large medical centers (AOR = 2.91, 95% CI: 2.67-3.17) and to live in rural areas (AOR = 2.12, 95% CI:1.92-2.35). The median days supplied of buprenorphine treatment was 722 (interquartile range: 322-1459) among the tele-buprenorphine patients compared to 295 (interquartile range: 67-854) among patients who received treatment in-person. CONCLUSIONS: Use of telemedicine to deliver buprenorphine treatment in VHA increased 3.5-fold between 2012 and 2019, though overall use remained low prior to COVID-19. Tele-buprenorphine is a promising modality especially when treatment access is limited. However, we must continue to understand how practitioners and patient are using telemedicine and how these patients' outcomes compare to those using in-person care.


Subject(s)
Buprenorphine , COVID-19 , Opioid-Related Disorders , Telemedicine , Veterans , Buprenorphine/therapeutic use , Cohort Studies , Humans , Male , Opiate Substitution Treatment , Opioid-Related Disorders/drug therapy , Pandemics , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
2.
J Subst Abuse Treat ; 120: 108150, 2021 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1023674

ABSTRACT

The response to the COVID-19 crisis has created direct pressure on health care providers to deliver virtual care, and has created the opportunity to develop innovations in remote treatment for people with substance use disorders. Remote treatments provide an intervention delivery framework that capitalizes on technological innovations in remote monitoring of behaviors and can efficiently use information collected from people and their environment to provide personalized treatments as needed. Interventions informed by behavioral economic theories can help to harness the largely untapped potential of virtual care in substance use treatment. Behavioral economic treatments, such as contingency management, the substance-free activity session, and episodic future thinking, are positioned to leverage remote monitoring of substance use and to use personalized medicine frameworks to deliver remote interventions in the COVID-19 era and beyond.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Substance-Related Disorders/therapy , Telemedicine/methods , Behavior Therapy/methods , Economics, Behavioral , Humans , Precision Medicine
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