Treating Opioid Use Disorder Legislative Briefing
May 1, 2018
A legislative briefing with more than 60 legislators and staff was held at the State Capitol on May 8th to discuss treatments and best practices used in treating Opioid Use Disorder (OUD).
The briefing provided an overview about how treatment experts are using Medically Assisted Treatment (MAT) in their daily practices to treat patients with OUD. Some of the highlights provided by expert speakers included:
- The approach to treating opioid addiction requires the same protocol as for other diseases and illnesses. Physicians should inform patients of all treatment options to addiction. Treatment isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach.
- Referrals to addiction treatment should be easier to acquire from primary care physicians.
- Rural areas have limited access to addiction treatment and are reliant on individual local government policies.
- FDA approved treatments are available that not only have effective outcomes but can also reduce the decline in mental health that can lead to other chronic mental illnesses.
- Biotech research is advancing medication delivery options that reduce the stigma associated with care (e.g. advancing from needles to spray) and improve treatment. It is also reducing the need for residential treatment or overnight stay related care and helping identify critical areas of advancement for those who fall out of treatment.
As many of the speakers noted, this is an issue that will not be solved anytime soon. However, with so many legislative leaders focusing on this issue, we believe California will be on the forefront of effectively treating OUD and serve as a national catalyst for change.
If you would like to receive an OUD briefing binder or if you have any questions, contact [email protected].