Acta Scientific Pharmaceutical Sciences (ASPS)(ISSN: 2581-5423)

Research Article Volume 4 Issue 12

Understanding the Barriers to Prescribing Buprenorphine in Massachusetts

Phuong Duong1*, Francis Melaragni2 and Carly Levy3

1Pharmacist, CVS Pharmacy, Boston, MA, USA
2Associate Professor, School of Pharmacy, MCPHS University, Boston, MA, USA
3Assistant Professor, School of Arts and Sciences, MCPHS University, Boston, MA, USA

*Corresponding Author: Phuong Duong, Pharmacist, CVS Pharmacy, Boston, MA, USA.

Received: October 21, 2020; Published: November 18, 2020



Background: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other U.S. government agencies have reported over 2 million Americans currently suffer from opioid use disorder.  Assisting those with opioid use disorder is a national problem that needs more attention and commitment. One approach that shows promise is the use of medication-assisted treatment (MAT) for those with opioid use disorder.

Objectives: This study focused on the barriers that limit the number of prescribers of buprenorphine in Massachusetts.   

Design and Participants: The researchers sent two questionnaires, made follow-up phone calls as appropriate, and sent emails to the 1300 providers in Massachusetts who were publicly available in the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMSHA) website and who have waivers to prescribe buprenorphine.

Measures and Results: Among the prescribers, payment and pharmacy issues were significant barriers faced by prescribers (OR 14.441; 95% CI 3.660 - 56.981). Among the non-prescribers, significant barriers were low demand (OR 0.305; 95% CI 0.096 - 0.965) and insufficient knowledge (OR 0.117; 95% CI 0.032 - 0.429). 

Conclusion: There have been many changes in the landscape of opioid epidemic in the past 13 years since the 2005 study of Walley., et al. However, many barriers still exist and need to be removed to improve the current opioid epidemic, and this includes the limited number of prescribers and thus limited access to the medication assisted treatment buprenorphine. 

Keywords: Buprenorphine; Massachusetts; Medication-assisted Treatment (MAT)



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Citation: Phuong Duong., et al. “Understanding the Barriers to Prescribing Buprenorphine in Massachusetts". Acta Scientific Pharmaceutical Sciences 4.12 (2020): 22-29.


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