FAIR Health recently analyzed data from its database of more than 26 billion privately billed healthcare claim records dating back to 2002. The report also identified the top 10 procedure codes for specific treatments and services associated with opioid abuse and dependence diagnoses by utilization and aggregate cost in each US Census region.
Whether treatment for opioid abuse and dependence most commonly emphasized methadone administration, naltrexone injection, group psychotherapy, or another procedure in 2017 depended on the state or region where the patient received care, according to a new white paper and state-by-state infographics from FAIR Health. Which procedures made up the largest share of total expenditures for opioid abuse and dependence also varied by region and state.
Analyzing 2017 data from our database of more than 26 billion privately billed healthcare claim records dating back to 2002, we identified the top 10 procedure codes for specific treatments and services associated with opioid abuse and dependence diagnoses by utilization and aggregate cost in each US Census region (Northeast, Midwest, South, West) and also reported the top 5 codes by utilization and aggregate cost in each state and the District of Columbia. Procedures include therapeutic procedures and other services, such as drug tests and visits to doctor’s offices or emergency departments (EDs).
Among the regional differences the study revealed were that:
Across states, the study found these differences, among others:
Dr Martin A. Makary, Johns Hopkins Professor of Health Policy, said: “FAIR Health has issued an excellent study of an important aspect of the opioid crisis. Treatment of opioid abuse and dependence should be driven by science. This report represents a step in that direction.”
Our study unveils a tapestry of variation by region and state in the procedures most commonly associated with opioid abuse and dependence. The findings transform the states into living laboratories, offering opportunities to research the outcomes linked to the different treatment strategies.
This is the fourth in a series of white papers released by FAIR Health on the opioid epidemic. The first white paper examined national trends in the epidemic; the second, the impact of the epidemic on the healthcare system; and the third, geographic variations in the epidemic.