Long-Term Effects of Increasing Buprenorphine Treatment Seeking, Duration, and Capacity on Opioid Overdose Fatalities: A Model-Based Analysis
Stringfellow, Erin J. PhD; Lim, Tse Yang PhD; DiGennaro, Catherine BA; Zhang, Ziyuan; Paramasivam, Pritika; Bearnot, Benjamin MD; Humphreys, Keith PhD; Jalali, Mohammad S. PhD
Journal of Addiction Medicine ():10.1097/ADM.0000000000001153, February 28, 2023. | DOI: 10.1097/ADM.0000000000001153
Because buprenorphine treatment of opioid use disorder reduces opioid overdose deaths (OODs), expanding access to care is an important policy and clinical care goal. Policymakers must choose within capacity limitations whether to expand the number of people with opioid use disorder who are treated or extend duration for existing patients. This inherent tradeoff could be made less acute with expanded buprenorphine treatment capacity.
To inform such decisions, we used a validated simulation model to project the effects of increasing buprenorphine treatment-seeking, average episode duration, and capacity (patients per provider) on OODs in the United States from 2023 to 2033, varying the start time to assess the effects of implementation delays.