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1.
J Behav Health Serv Res ; 49(3): 262-281, 2022 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1872666

ABSTRACT

This study aims to describe which substance use service (SUS) organizations and who within these organizations support the maintenance of policies targeted at improving substance use treatment services. An online survey assessing respondent, organizational and program demographics, and knowledge and support regarding policy changes was distributed to all certified SUS and harm reduction programs in NYS. Bivariate and latent class analyses were used to identify patterns and associations to policy choices. Across the 227 respondents, there was a support for maintaining expansion of insurance coverage, virtual behavioral health/counseling and medication initiation/maintenance visits, reductions in prior authorizations, and access to prevention/harm reduction services. Three classes of support for policies were derived: (1) high-supporters (n = 49; 21%), (2) low-supporters (n = 66; 29%), and (3) selective-supporters. Having knowledge of policy changes was associated with membership in the high-supporters class. Implications regarding the role of knowledge in behavioral health policies dissemination structures, decision-making, and long-term expansion of SUS are discussed.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Substance-Related Disorders , COVID-19/prevention & control , Health Policy , Humans , Insurance Coverage , New York , Substance-Related Disorders/therapy
2.
Psychiatr Serv ; 73(5): 481, 2022 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1861747
4.
Addict Sci Clin Pract ; 17(1): 6, 2022 01 31.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1662427

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: To address the US opioid epidemic, there is an urgent clinical need to provide persons with opioid use disorder (OUD) with effective medication treatments for OUD (MOUD). Formulations of sublingual buprenorphine/naloxone (SL-BUP/NLX) are considered the standard of care for OUD including within the Veterans Healthcare Administration (VHA). However, poor retention on MOUD undermines its effectiveness. Long-acting injectable monthly buprenorphine (INJ-BUP) (e.g., Sublocade®) has the potential to improve retention and therefore reduce opioid use and overdose. Designing and conducting studies for OUD pose unique challenges. The strategies and solutions to some of these considerations in designing Cooperative Studies Program (CSP) 2014, Buprenorphine for Treating Opioid Use Disorder in Veterans (VA-BRAVE), a randomized, 20-site, clinical effectiveness trial comparing INJ-BUP to SL-BUP/NLX conducted within the VHA may provide valuable guidance for others confronted with similar investigation challenges. METHODS: This 52-week, parallel group, open-label, randomized controlled trial (RCT) evaluates the comparative effectiveness of two current FDA-approved formulations of buprenorphine: (1) daily SL-BUP/NLX vs. (2) monthly (28-day) INJ-BUP for Veterans with moderate to severe OUD (n = 952). The primary outcomes are (1) retention in MOUD and (2) opioid abstinence. Secondary outcomes include measures of other drug use, psychiatric symptoms, medical outcomes including prevalence rates of HIV, hepatitis B and C as well as social outcomes (housing instability, criminal justice involvement), service utilization and cost-effectiveness. Special considerations in conducting a comparative effectiveness trial with this population and during COVID-19 pandemic were also included. DISCUSSION: The evaluation of the extended-release formulation of buprenorphine compared to the standard sublingual formulation in real-world VHA settings is of paramount importance in addressing the opioid epidemic. The extent to which this new treatment facilitates retention, decreases opioid use, and prevents severe sequelae of OUD has not been studied in any long-term trial to date. Positive findings in this trial could lead to widespread adoption of MOUD, and, if proven superior INJ-BUP, by clinicians throughout the VHA and beyond. This treatment has the potential to reduce opioid use among Veterans, improve medical, psychological, and social outcomes, and save lives at justifiable cost. Trial registration Registered at Clinicaltrials.gov NCT04375033.


Subject(s)
Buprenorphine , COVID-19 , Opioid-Related Disorders , Veterans , Buprenorphine/therapeutic use , Humans , Narcotic Antagonists/therapeutic use , Opioid-Related Disorders/drug therapy , SARS-CoV-2
5.
J Subst Abuse Treat ; 133: 108550, 2022 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1284257

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, regulations for substance use services changed to accommodate stay-at-home orders and physical distancing guidelines. METHODS: Using in-depth interviews (N = 14) and framework analysis, we describe how policymakers developed, adopted, and implemented regulations governing services for substance use disorders during COVID-19, and how policymakers' perceived the impacts of these regulations in New York State. RESULTS: During the COVID-19 pandemic, policymakers shifted to more inclusive approaches of knowledge generation and co-production of recommendations. Barriers to adoption and implementation of new regulations included medication/services supply, lack of integration, stigma, and overcriminalization. CONCLUSION: Findings from this study highlight the potential feasibility and benefits of co-produced policies for substance use services and the need for consistent service supply, better integration with health care services, reduced stigma, improved funding structures, best practice guidelines, criminal justice reform, and harm reduction support. These considerations should inform future policy maintenance and modifications to substance use services related to COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Substance-Related Disorders , Humans , Pandemics , Policy , Policy Making , SARS-CoV-2
6.
J Subst Abuse Treat ; 122: 108196, 2021 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-922082

ABSTRACT

The temporary loosening of regulations governing methadone and buprenorphine treatment for opioid use disorder (OUD) in the U.S., instituted to prevent the spread of COVID-19, has created an opportunity to explore the effectiveness of new models of care for people with OUD. The opioid cascade describes the current status of the treatment system, where only a fraction of people with OUD initiate effective medication treatment for OUD (MOUD), and of those only a fraction is retained in treatment. Regulatory changes-such as availability of larger take-home supplies of methadone and buprenorphine initiated via telemedicine (e.g., no initial in person visit; telemedicine buprenorphine permitted across state lines)-could modify the cascade, by reducing the burden and increasing the attractiveness, availability, and feasibility of MOUD both for people with OUD and for providers. We review examples of more liberal MOUD regimens, including the implementation of buprenorphine in France in the 1990s, primary care-based methadone in Canada, and low-threshold buprenorphine models. Research is needed to document whether new models implemented in the U.S. in the wake of COVID-19 are successful, and whether safety concerns, such as diversion and misuse, emerge. We discuss barriers to implementation, including racial and ethnic health disparities, and lack of knowledge and reluctance among potential providers of MOUD. We suggest that the urgency and public spiritedness of the response to COVID-19 be harnessed to make gains on the opioid cascade, inspiring prescribers, health systems, and communities to embrace the delivery of MOUD to meet the needs of an increasingly vulnerable population.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Opioid-Related Disorders/drug therapy , Pandemics , African Americans , Buprenorphine/therapeutic use , Health Services Accessibility , Healthcare Disparities , Humans , Legislation, Drug , Methadone/therapeutic use , Narcotic Antagonists/therapeutic use , Opiate Substitution Treatment , Opioid-Related Disorders/epidemiology , Telemedicine , United States/epidemiology
7.
Psychol Trauma ; 12(S1): S111-S112, 2020 Aug.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-607254

ABSTRACT

The United States is facing both the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic and an ongoing epidemic of opioid overdose. Opioid use disorder is associated with other mental health problems, trauma, and social and health disparities. While the United States has acted to improve access to treatment for mental health and opioid use, research will be needed to understand the effectiveness of new policies in the context of COVID-19. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2020 APA, all rights reserved).


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/psychology , Drug Overdose/psychology , Opioid Epidemic , Opioid-Related Disorders/drug therapy , Opioid-Related Disorders/psychology , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/psychology , Social Isolation , Adult , COVID-19 , Humans , Opiate Substitution Treatment , United States , United States Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
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