Suboxone has become standard use in Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) for opioid addiction. In the latest news on Suboxone, Congress has formed committees to create national standards for opioid addiction and MAT is seen as a vital part of any treatment plan. Because the withdrawal from opioids is so painful, most opioid addicts won’t even attempt to enter outpatient treatment, and inpatient treatment is usually unaffordable or considered inappropriate level of care by insurance providers. This is from Drugs.com:
MONDAY, June 19, 2017 – The rate of opioid addiction among Americans age 25 and under rose nearly sixfold from 2001 to 2014. But few young addicts get medical treatment that might prevent overdose or relapse, a new study finds. Only about 27 percent of youths treated for addiction to prescription painkillers or heroin receive either buprenorphine or naltrexone, two recommended anti-addiction medications, researchers reported. “These medications are considered the evidence-based standard of care for opioid addiction by the American Academy of Pediatrics,” said lead researcher Dr. Scott Hadland. He’s an assistant professor of pediatrics at Boston University School of Medicine. Buprenorphine (Buprenex, Suboxone) has been shown to reduce cravings, while naltrexone (Revia, Vivitrol) blocks the high from opioids, he said.
The problem is access and the availability of quality treatment programs. Other studies show that opioid addicts who enter medical care that’s not an addiction specialty treatment facility are far more likely to die from opioid addiction. There’s still a lack of knowledge and understanding of the latest treatment methods related to dealing with opioid addiction, especially when it comes to Suboxone.
The good news is that opioid addiction can be treated and people do recover. Long term treatment is better than short term. It’s not that we don’t know what to do to deal with the epidemic — it’s access and availability to treatment facilities that provide evidence-based, quality care. The next time you hear someone say that opioid addiction is a serious and vexing problem, remind them that there are solutions. We just have to develop innovative ways to fund and get opioid addicts into treatment.