Brown University’s new syllabus covers treating opioid-use disorder
A new program at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, that could be the first in the country according to school officials, is turning out physicians equipped to treat opioid-use disorder. Next year, more than 30 medical students who graduate from Brown’s program will have the necessary credential to prescribe buprenorphine, which can aid in the treatment of the disease – and by 2019, every Brown medical school graduate will qualify.
The federal Drug Abuse Treatment Act of 2000 (DATA 2000) requires that physicians have at least eight hours of training to prescribe buprenorphine, but at Brown, medical students take 23 hours of coursework that teaches them how to treat opioid-use disorder – and the Rhode Island Department of Health has determined, this coursework qualifies them for a DATA 2000 waiver.
Brown’s program is the result of a collaboration between the state government and several medical institutions within Rhode Island.
“Our governor [Gina Raimondo] has made addressing the epidemic a huge priority,” said Paul George, MD, assistant dean for medical education at Brown. “This is an issue that doesn’t only affect primary care doctors or addiction medicine specialists. It’s something that physicians from every specialty are going to see in their practices and have to treat at some point. The more physicians we train to be able to properly prescribe opioids or other pain-management strategies, the better. The number of physicians we can train to be able to recognize opioid misuse and be able to provide intervention and referral for treatment, the better.”
But nationwide, only about 33,000 physicians have obtained the DATA 2000 waiver, according to a report in the American Journal on Addictions. Less than half, though, are offering medication-assisted treatment for opioid use disorder.
Source: AMA Wire