How Payers Can Use 4 Strategies to Ensure Opioid Use Disorder Care

On this episode of Managed Care Cast, we speak with the chief medical officer for Virginia’s Medicaid program about 4 ways payers can make sure that those with opioid use disorder get the treatment they need; the strategies are outlined in the March issue of The American Journal of Managed Care.

The upheaval created by the pandemic over the past year has particularly affected individuals struggling with opioid use disorder (OUD) and other substance use issues in the United States, which set an unfortunate record in the first half of last year. Over 81,000 people died of drug overdoses between June 2019 and May 2020, largely driven by illicit fentanyl, as synthetic opioid overdose deaths increased 38%.

The March issue of The American Journal of Managed Care® includes a commentary about how payers can meet the needs of patients who need care for OUD. Chethan Bachireddy, MD, MSc, the chief medical officer for Virginia’s Medicaid program, and coauthor Mishka Terplan, MD, MPH, outline 4 things that payers can do to make sure that patients can get the treatment they need, and what’s at risk if they don’t.

On this episode of Managed Care Cast, Bachireddy discusses the commentary, “Payer Strategies to Ensure Access to Care for Individuals With Opioid Use Disorder During COVID-19,” as well as how these strategies are being used in Virginia, where he continues to work one day a week as a primary care physician at Virginia Commonwealth University.

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