Trends in Buprenorphine to Treat Opioid Use Disorder in California, 2012 to 2018: Medicaid Outpaces the Rest of the State

Iraklis Erik Tseregounis, James J. Gasper, Stephen G. Henry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

OBJECTIVES: Opioid use disorder remains undertreated in the United States. One of the primary mechanisms for expanding access to treatment has been the use of buprenorphine. In this study, we compare prescribing trends of buprenorphine paid through Medicaid versus other payer sources. METHODS: Combined data from California's prescription drug monitoring program and California's Department of Health Care Services was used to obtain statewide quarterly prescription rates for buprenorphine, indicated for the treatment of opioid use disorder, from 2012 to 2018. RESULTS: From 2012 to 2018, the rate of individuals treated with buprenorphine in Medicaid increased by 657% (1.39-10.5 Medicaid beneficiaries per 10,000) with increases beginning in 2014 and continuing through 2018. Rate of individual prescribing among non-Medicaid sources increased by 93.7% (6.54-12.7 non-Medicaid individuals per 10,000) with most increases occurring before 2014. CONCLUSIONS: California Medicaid has made considerable gains in buprenorphine access, with access growing steadily even after expansions through the Affordable Care Act plateaued. In contrast, recent gains in buprenorphine access for individuals without Medicaid are uninspiring, indicating that initiatives to improve buprenorphine access to patients without Medicaid are urgently needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)425-428
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Addiction Medicine
Volume15
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Pharmacology (medical)

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Trends in Buprenorphine to Treat Opioid Use Disorder in California, 2012 to 2018: Medicaid Outpaces the Rest of the State'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this