Opioid dependence: positive long-term outcomes with ED buprenorphine continued in primary care
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For opioid dependence, emergency department (ED)-initiated buprenorphine (Suboxone) with continuation in primary care (the intervention) was associated with increased engagement in addiction treatment and lower illicit opioid use at 2 mo post-discharge, but not at 6 and 12 mo.
Why this matters
Nonmedical use of opioids has reached epidemic proportions and interventions are needed to retain patients in care.
This was an extension study of 88% of the cohort that had been randomized in an earlier controlled trial (n=329).
Patients in the ED had been randomly assigned to the intervention, referral, or brief intervention.
Main outcome measures were self-reported engagement in formal addiction treatment, days of illicit opioid use.