Fighting the Opioid Epidemic

According to Admiral Brett P. Giroir M.D HHS Assistant Secretary for Health, “HHS and DEA are developing materials https://www.hhs.gov/opioids to help clinicians use telemedicine as a tool to expand buprenorphine-based Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) for opioid use disorder treatment under current DEA regulations to patients in remote or rural areas under certain circumstances.”

As the Assistant Secretary explains, “This information is not widely known among healthcare providers and other stakeholders that may have been reluctant to use telemedicine for prescribing MAT. So we are trying make sure that everyone knows that effective treatment is available which can also include using telemedicine to help combat the opioid epidemic in the U.S.”

Also, beyond telemedicine, other forms of health IT can be used to combat the opioid crisis. The Office of the National Coordinator (ONC) https://www.healthit.gov has several resources available to healthcare providers to help them learn more about health IT tools useful in combatting the opioid epidemic.

Go to https://www.healthit.gov/playbook/opioid-epiemic-and-health-it to view one of the resources available from one of the chapters in the Health IT Playbook. Another resource is at https://www.healthit.gov/sites.default/files which has information included in ONC’s Educational Module for Behavioral health Providers.

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