Addiction Science & Clinical Practice

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ISSN / EISSN : 1940-0632 / 1940-0640
Total articles ≅ 658
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, Laura Chavez, Jordan M. Braciszewski, Mary Akolsile, Denise M. Boudreau, Gwen Lapham, Cynthia I. Campbell, Gavin Bart, Bobbi Jo H. Yarborough, Jeffrey H. Samet, et al.
Addiction Science & Clinical Practice, Volume 16, pp 1-8; doi:10.1186/s13722-021-00249-3

Purpose Little is known about prevalence and treatment of OUD among youth engaged in primary care (PC). Medications are the recommended treatment of opioid use disorder (OUD) for adolescents and young adults (youth). This study describes the prevalence of OUD, the prevalence of medication treatment for OUD, and patient characteristics associated with OUD treatment among youth engaged in PC. Methods This cross-sectional study includes youth aged 16–25 years engaged in PC. Eligible patients had ≥ 1 PC visit during fiscal years (FY) 2014–2016 in one of 6 health systems across 6 states. Data from electronic health records and insurance claims were used to identify OUD diagnoses, office-based OUD medication treatment, and patient demographic and clinical characteristics in the FY of the first PC visit during the study period. Descriptive analyses were conducted in all youth, and stratified by age (16–17, 18–21, 22–25 years). Results Among 303,262 eligible youth, 2131 (0.7%) had a documented OUD diagnosis. The prevalence of OUD increased by ascending age groups. About half of youth with OUD had documented depression or anxiety and one third had co-occurring substance use disorders. Receipt of medication for OUD was lowest among youth 16–17 years old (14%) and highest among those aged 22–25 (39%). Conclusions In this study of youth engaged in 6 health systems across 6 states, there was low receipt of medication treatment, and high prevalence of other substance use disorders and mental health disorders. These findings indicate an urgent need to increase medication treatment for OUD and to integrate treatment for other substance use and mental health disorders.
, Constance Horgan, Gavin Bart
Addiction Science & Clinical Practice, Volume 16, pp 1-11; doi:10.1186/s13722-021-00253-7

Background Office-Based Opioid Treatment (OBOT) is a delivery model which seeks to make medications for opioid use disorder (MOUD), particularly buprenorphine, widely available in general medical clinics and offices. Despite evidence supporting its effectiveness and cost-effectiveness, uptake of the OBOT model has been relatively slow. One important barrier to faster diffusion of OBOT may be the financial challenges facing clinics that could adopt it. Methods We review key features and variants of the OBOT model, then discuss different approaches that have been used to fund it, and the findings from previous economic analyses of OBOT’s impact on organizational finances. We conclude by discussing the implications of these analyses for the financial sustainability of the OBOT delivery model. Results Like other novel services, OBOT poses challenges for providers due to its reliance on services which are ‘non-billable’ in a fee-for-service environment. A variety of approaches exist for covering the non-billable costs, but which approaches are feasible depends on local payer policies. The scale of the challenges varies with clinic size, organizational affiliations and the policies of the state where the clinic operates. Small clinics in a purely fee-for-service environment may be particularly challenged in pursuing OBOT, given the need to fund a dedicated staff and extra administrative work. The current pandemic may pose both opportunities and challenges for the sustainability of OBOT, with expanded access to telemedicine, but also uncertainty about the durability of the expansion. Conclusion The reimbursement environment for OBOT delivery varies widely around the US, and is evolving as Medicare (and possibly other payers) introduce alternative payment approaches. Clinics considering adoption of OBOT are well advised to thoroughly investigate these issues as they make their decision. In addition, payers will need to rethink how they pay for OBOT to make it sustainable.
Bente Birkeland, Bente Weimand, Torleif Ruud, Darryl Maybery, John-Kåre Vederhus
Addiction Science & Clinical Practice, Volume 16, pp 1-9; doi:10.1186/s13722-021-00252-8

Purpose Support from family and other social network elements can be important in helping patients to cope with practical and emotional consequences of diseases. The aim of the study was to examine perception of family and social support and quality of life (QoL) in patients undergoing treatment for substance use disorders (SUDs). We compared them with patients in treatment for mental disorders (MDs) and physical disorders (PDs). Methods We used data from a national multicenter study that recruited patients (N = 518) from three treatment domains; SUD treatment units, MD treatment units, and PD treatment units (severe neurological conditions or cancer). Data on family cohesion, social support, and QoL were compared across patient groups. In addition, data on health variables was collected. We used a multiple linear regression procedure to examine how health and support variables were associated with QoL. Results Family cohesion and social support in the SUD and MD groups were rated at similarly low levels, substantially lower than in the PD group. The SUD group exhibited a somewhat lower QoL than did the PD group, but their QoL was still in the near-to-normal range. In contrast, the MD group had markedly low QoL. When examining factors associated with QoL, we found that greater family cohesion and social support were positively associated with QoL. Mental distress was the strongest factor, and was negatively associated with QoL (beta − 0.15, 95% CI = − 0.17/− 0.14, p < 0.001). Conclusion Service providers need to be aware of the weaker networks and less regulatory family and/or social support available to patients with SUDs. Providers should focus consistently on the social networks of patients and include patients’ families in treatment processes.
Mégane Héron, Anne-Laurence Le Faou, Gladys Ibanez, Brigitte Métadieu, Maria Melchior,
Addiction Science & Clinical Practice, Volume 16, pp 1-10; doi:10.1186/s13722-021-00254-6

Background Compared to smokers with favorable socio-economic position (SEP), those with low SEP are less likely to have a successful smoking cessation attempt. Tailored approaches are therefore needed, and general practitioners could help reaching and assisting usually hard-to-reach population. Method STOP (Sevrage Tabagique à l’aide d’Outils dédiés selon la Préférence) is a pilot study, examining the feasibility, acceptability and potentiality of a smoking cessation intervention centered on smoker’s preference. Smokers with low SEP, wishing to quit, were recruited in six healthcare centers in the Greater Paris area. They were asked to choose between different types of nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) products and/or e-cigarette with liquids delivered free of charge to aid their smoking cessation attempt. We describe the characteristics of recruited participants, their perception of smoking cessation aids, and the evolution of their smoking status 4 to 6 weeks after recruitment. Results We recruited 49 participants, of which 29% chose an e-cigarette, 29% chose NRT and 42% chose both an e-cigarette and NRT. The intervention was shown to be acceptable by participants and health professionals. Among the 24 participants followed for at least one month, 14 (28% of all participants) stopped smoking, and 9 (18%) considerably reduced their consumption. Conclusion The STOP intervention is feasible and acceptable, even if more efforts should be made to limit lost-to-follow-up. This preference-based intervention also shows interesting prospect in helping smokers with low SEP quit smoking. We will test the efficacy of this preference-based intervention in a randomized controlled trial.
Addiction Science & Clinical Practice, Volume 16, pp 1-10; doi:10.1186/s13722-021-00250-w

Background There is no longer support for the idea that brief intervention programmes alone can contribute meaningfully to the improvement of population health relating to alcohol. As a result, calls for major innovations and paradigm shifts grow, notably among research leaders. This paper briefly examines the history of the development of the evidence-base from the landmark World Health Organisation projects on Screening and Brief Intervention (SBI) in the 1980s onwards. Particular attention is given to weaknesses in the theorisation of social influence and interventions design, and declining effect sizes over time. Although the old SBI paradigm may be exhausted where it has been applied, it has not been replaced by a new paradigm. Alcohol marketing encourages heavy drinking and today may have more powerful effects on thinking about alcohol, and about alcohol problems, than previously. The nature of the societal challenge being faced in an alcogenic environment in which alcohol is widely promoted and weakly regulated underpins consideration of the possibilities for contemporary evidence-informed public health responses. Evidence-informed perspectives in discourses on alcohol problems need to be strengthened in redeveloping rationales for brief interventions. This process needs to move away from sole reliance on a model based on a two-person discussion of alcohol, which is divorced from wider concerns the person may have. Reimagining the nature of brief interventions involves incorporating digital content, emphasising meso-level social processes based on material that people want to share, and seeking synergies with macro-level population and media issues, including alcohol policy measures. Conclusions Current versions of brief interventions may be simply too weak to contend with the pressures of an alcogenic environment. A new generation of brief interventions could have a key role to play in developing multi-level responses to the problems caused by alcohol.
Addiction Science & Clinical Practice, Volume 16, pp 1-14; doi:10.1186/s13722-021-00251-9

Background Patients with opioid use disorder (OUD) often have complex health care needs. Methadone is one of the medications for opioid use disorder (MOUD) used in the management of OUDs. Highly restrictive methadone treatment—which requires patient compliance with many rules of care—often results in low retention, especially if there is inadequate support from healthcare providers (HCPs). Nevertheless, HCPs should strive to offer patient-centred care (PCC) as it is deemed the gold standard to care. Such an approach can encourage patients to be actively involved in their care, ultimately increasing retention and yielding positive treatment outcomes. Methods In this secondary analysis, we aimed to explore how HCPs were applying the principles of PCC when caring for patients with OUD in a highly restrictive, biomedical and paternalistic setting. We applied Mead and Bower’s PCC framework in the secondary analysis of 40 in-depth, semi-structured interviews with both HCPs and patients. Results We present how PCC's concepts of; (a) biopsychosocial perspective; (b) patient as a person; (c) sharing power and responsibility; (d) therapeutic alliance and (e) doctor as a person—are applied in a methadone treatment program. We identified both opportunities and barriers to providing PCC in these settings. Conclusion In a highly restrictive methadone treatment program, full implementation of PCC is not possible. However, implementation of some aspects of PCC are possible to improve patient empowerment and engagement with care, possibly leading to increase in retention and better treatment outcomes.
, Marcela C. Smid, Jacob D. Baylis, Elizabeth Charron, Amy E. Binns-Calvey, Shayla Archer, Saul J. Weiner, Lori Jo Begaye, Gerald Cochran
Addiction Science & Clinical Practice, Volume 16, pp 1-15; doi:10.1186/s13722-021-00246-6

Background Opioid use disorder (OUD) disproportionately impacts rural and American Indian communities and has quadrupled among pregnant individuals nationwide in the past two decades. Yet, limited data are available about access and quality of care available to pregnant individuals in rural areas, particularly among American Indians (AIs). Unannounced standardized patients (USPs), or “secret shoppers” with standardized characteristics, have been used to assess healthcare access and quality when outcomes cannot be measured by conventional methods or when differences may exist between actual versus reported care. While the USP approach has shown benefit in evaluating primary care and select specialties, its use to date for OUD and pregnancy is very limited. Methods We used literature review, current practice guidelines for perinatal OUD management, and stakeholder engagement to design a novel USP protocol to assess healthcare access and quality for OUD in pregnancy. We developed two USP profiles—one white and one AI—to reflect our target study area consisting of three rural, predominantly white and AI US counties. We partnered with a local community health center network providing care to a large AI population to define six priority outcomes for evaluation: (1) OUD treatment knowledge among clinical staff answering telephones; (2) primary care clinic facilitation and provision of prenatal care and buprenorphine treatment; (3) appropriate completion of evidence-based screening, symptom assessment, and initial steps in management; (4) appropriate completion of risk factor screening/probing about individual circumstances that may affect care; (5) patient-directed tone, stigma, and professionalism by clinic staff; and (6) disparities in care between whites and American Indians. Discussion The development of this USP protocol tailored to a specific environment and high-risk patient population establishes an innovative approach to evaluate healthcare access and quality for pregnant individuals with OUD. It is intended to serve as a roadmap for our own study and for future related work within the context of substance use disorders and pregnancy.
Nicolas A. Barticevic, , Soledad M. Zuzulich, Victoria Rodriguez, Diego Quevedo, Brena F. Sena, Laura Bradshaw
Addiction Science & Clinical Practice, Volume 16, pp 1-10; doi:10.1186/s13722-021-00248-4

Background Because of the shortage of health professionals in Chilean primary care, Health Technicians (HT) are providing Brief Interventions (BI) for risky alcohol consumption. We compared the efficacy of two AUDIT-linked interventions provided by HTs: an informative leaflet and a BI plus leaflet. Methods This is a parallel-group randomized controlled trial with 1:1 randomization. Participants were identified through screening with the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT) at five primary care centers between March 2016 and July 2017. People older than 18 years at intermediate-risk (AUDIT score 8 to 15, inclusive) were randomized to receive either an HT-delivered BI (n = 174) or an informative leaflet (n = 168). Only data from participants (n = 294) who completed the 6-month assessment were analyzed. The leaflet was delivered without further advice. It contains alcohol consumption limits, a change planner, and strategies to decrease drinking. The BI was a 5-min discussion on the leaflet´s content plus normative feedback, tailored information on alcohol and health, and a change plan. The change in the AUDIT risk category six months after randomization (primary outcome) was compared among groups with a Chi-squared test. Changes in the secondary outcomes, which were scores on the AUDIT and the AUDIT´s consumption items (AUDIT-C), were compared with T-tests. Mixed-effects linear models adjusted for potential confounders. Outcome adjudicators were blinded to group assignment. Results At 6-month follow-up, low-risk alcohol consumption was observed in 119 (80%) participants in the BI group, and in 103 (71%) in the leaflet group, with no difference among groups ( $$\chi 2$$ χ 2 [1, N = 294] = 2.6, p = 0.1; adjusted odds ratio 0.6; 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.34, 1.05). The mean AUDIT score decreased by 5.76 points in the BI group, and by 5.07 in the leaflet group, which represents a 0.86 AUDIT point reduction attributable to the BI (secondary outcome) (T = 2.03, p = 0.043; adjusted mean difference 0.86 CI 0.06, 1.66). Conclusions The AUDIT-linked BI delivered by HTs was not associated with a greater reduction of risky alcohol consumption than an informative leaflet. Delivering a leaflet could be more efficient than a BI when provided by HTs; however, more research on the effectiveness of the leaflet is needed. Trial registration NCT02642757 (December 30, 2015)
Justin S. Tauscher, Eliza B. Cohn, Tascha R. Johnson, Kaylie D. Diteman, Richard K. Ries, David C. Atkins,
Addiction Science & Clinical Practice, Volume 16, pp 1-15; doi:10.1186/s13722-021-00247-5

Background Measurement-based care (MBC) is the practice of routinely administering standardized measures to support clinical decision-making and monitor treatment progress. Despite evidence of its effectiveness, MBC is rarely adopted in routine substance use disorder (SUD) treatment settings and little is known about the factors that may improve its adoptability in these settings. The current study gathered qualitative data from SUD treatment clinicians about their perceptions of MBC, the clinical outcomes they would most like to monitor in MBC, and suggestions for the design and implementation of MBC systems in their settings. Methods Fifteen clinicians from one publicly-funded and two privately-funded outpatient SUD treatment clinics participated in one-on-one research interviews. Interviews focused on clinicians’ perceived benefits, drawbacks, and ideas related to implementing MBC technology into their clinical workflows. Interviews were audio recorded, transcribed, and coded to allow for thematic analysis using a mixed deductive and inductive approach. Clinicians also completed a card sorting task to rate the perceived helpfulness of routinely measuring and monitoring different treatment outcomes. Results Clinicians reported several potential benefits of MBC, including improved patient-provider communication, client empowerment, and improved communication between clinicians. Clinicians also expressed potential drawbacks, including concerns about subjectivity in patient self-reports, limits to personalization, increased time burdens, and needing to learn to use new technologies. Clinicians generated several ideas and preferences aimed at minimizing burden of MBC, illustrating clinical changes over time, improving ease of use, and improving personalization. Numerous patient outcomes were identified as “very helpful” to track, including coping skills, social support, and motivation for change. Conclusions MBC may be a beneficial tool for improving clinical care in SUD treatment settings. MBC tools may be particularly adoptable if they are compatible with existing workflows, help illustrate gradual and nonlinear progress in SUD treatment, measure outcomes perceived as clinically useful, accommodate multiple use cases and stakeholder groups, and are framed as an additional source of information meant to augment, rather than replace, existing practices and information sources.
, Joann M. Sperl-Hillen, Patrick J. O’Connor, A. Lauren Crain, Laurel Nightingale, Anne Pylkas, Kristen V. Huntley, Gavin Bart
Addiction Science & Clinical Practice, Volume 16, pp 1-11; doi:10.1186/s13722-021-00245-7

Objective Most Americans with opioid use disorder (OUD) do not receive indicated medical care. A clinical decision support (CDS) tool for primary care providers (PCPs) could address this treatment gap. Our primary objective was to build OUD-CDS tool and demonstrate its functionality and accuracy. Secondary objectives were to achieve high use and approval rates and improve PCP confidence in diagnosing and treating OUD. Methods A convenience sample of 55 PCPs participated. Buprenorphine-waivered PCPs (n = 8) were assigned to the intervention. Non-waivered PCPs (n = 47) were randomized to intervention (n = 24) or control (n = 23). Intervention PCPs received access to the OUD-CDS, which alerted them to patients at potentially increased risk for OUD or overdose and guided diagnosis and treatment. Control PCPs provided care as usual. Results The OUD-CDS was functional and accurate following extensive multi-phased testing. PCPs used the OUD-CDS in 5% of encounters with at-risk patients, far less than the goal of 60%. OUD screening confidence increased for all intervention PCPs and OUD diagnosis increased for non-waivered intervention PCPs. Most PCPs (65%) would recommend the OUD-CDS and found it helpful with screening for OUD and discussing and prescribing OUD medications. Discussion PCPs generally liked the OUD-CDS, but use rates were low, suggesting the need to modify CDS design, implementation strategies and integration with existing primary care workflows. Conclusion The OUD-CDS tool was functional and accurate, but PCP use rates were low. Despite low use, the OUD-CDS improved confidence in OUD screening, diagnosis and use of buprenorphine. NIH Trial registration NCT03559179. Date of registration: 06/18/2018. URL:
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