amfAR’s Medication-Assisted Treatment Analysis Featured in New York Times
amfAR’s analysis of the availability of medication-assisted treatment (MAT) at drug treatment facilities nationwide was featured in the December 29, 2018, Sunday edition of The New York Times.
The piece, “In Rehab, ‘Two Warring Factions’: Abstinence vs. Medication,” takes a look at an addiction treatment center in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, to show the evolution of residential drug treatment for opioid addiction.
Some 70,000 people in the United States died of overdoses in 2017, and opioids were the main driver, according to the CDC. amfAR’s MAT analysis was used as an additional source to show that nationally, 49 percent of the nearly 3,000 residential programs that treat opioid addiction still don’t use any of the medications available to help people overcome their addiction. Still, this is an improvement over 2016, when 58 percent weren’t using any of them.
“The goal of the analysis was to show that many Americans suffering from opioid addiction still lack access to potentially lifesaving medications,” said amfAR Policy Associate Austin Jones, who spearheaded the analysis. “We’re hoping the analysis helps inform the policy makers, advocates and healthcare professionals charged with combating what has become a national crisis in the United States.”
The amfAR analysis is based on data from the amfAR Opioid & Health Indicators Database, which allows users to view and compare a range of key indicators pertaining to the U.S. opioid, HIV, and hepatitis C epidemics down to the county level. Data from the database can be downloaded in multiple formats.