Changes in Substance Abuse Treatment Use Among Individuals With Opioid Use Disorders in the United States, 2004-2013 | Psychiatry | JAMA | JAMA Network
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Research Letter
October 13, 2015

Changes in Substance Abuse Treatment Use Among Individuals With Opioid Use Disorders in the United States, 2004-2013

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Health Policy and Management, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland
  • 2Institute for Health and Social Policy, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland
JAMA. 2015;314(14):1515-1517. doi:10.1001/jama.2015.10345

During the last decade, nonmedical use of opioid analgesics and heroin increased substantially in the United States, contributing to an increased rate of overdose deaths.1 Expanding access to substance use treatment among individuals with opioid use disorders (OUDs) may be an important strategy for reducing harmful use.2 In the early 2000s, less than one-sixth of individuals with OUDs received any treatment, and use of office-based treatment was rare.3 It is unknown whether treatment patterns have changed in recent years.

Buprenorphine, approved in 2002, provides an office-based treatment, but it remains unclear whether buprenorphine availability has increased treatment rates.4 The 2008 mental health parity law eliminating some insurance-based barriers to addiction treatment could also expand treatment options; research indicates addiction treatment rates did not increase, but average expenditures did.5

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