SAMHSA Publishes Rule on Dispensing of Buprenorphine
On December 5, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) published a final rule allowing greater flexibility in how Opiod Treatment Programs (OTPs) are permitted to dispense buprenorphine for the treatment of opiod addiction. Under current requirements, patients must wait one year before being allowed to receive a two-week take home supply of buprenorphine. The new rule, which goes into effect on January 7, 2013, removes the restrictions on how long an individual must be in treatment before receiving a take home supply of medication. This change allows providers greater flexibility in treating patients based on their unique circumstances and treatment needs. The rule only applies to the dispensing of buprenorphine; how methadone is dispensed remains the same.