SAMHSA Announces Reporting Requirements for Practitioners Treating Opioid Use Disorder

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s has published its reporting requirements for physicians authorized to prescribe buprenorphine at the increased limit of 275 patients.

Previously, practitioners with the appropriate waiver could only prescribe buprenorphine for up to 100 patients per year. The recently finalized final rule, “Medication Assisted Treatment for Opioid Use Disorders,” increased the limit to 275 in July 2016. The new requirements of the final rule become effective October 27, 2016.

The Drug Addiction Treatment Act of 2000 expanded the settings for medication-assisted opioid dependency treatment. Qualified physicians may now dispense or prescribe specifically approved Schedule III, IV, and V narcotic medications (those that have a lower risk for abuse, like buprenorphine) in settings other than an opioid treatment program (OTP) such as a methadone clinic.

The new reporting requirements are aimed to monitor safe and appropriate prescribing practices. Practitioners will be required to report their annual caseload of patients by month, the number of patients for whom they provide behavioral health services or refer to behavioral health services, and the features of their diversion control plan.

In order to prescribe or dispense buprenorphine, physicians must qualify for a physician waiver, which includes completing training for treatment of opioid use disorders or verification of other training on the treatment of addiction. Physicians are also required to complete specific buprenorphine training.

If you are a practitioner at a buprenorphine clinic and are looking for services specially designed to complement your treatment of patients with opioid use disorder, please contact Cordant Health Solutions™ to learn more about our integrated toxicology and buprenorphine pharmacy services.

To read the rule, click here: