SAMHSA’s Final Rule on MOUD Published

Federal Register site screenshot: MOUD

In February of this year, SAMHSA published a final rule allowing for the flexible use of medications to treat opioid use disorder in Opioid Treatment Programs that were enacted during the COVID-19 pandemic to become permanent.

Highlights of this modification include:

  • Patients will be able to receive take-home doses of methadone.
  • Treatment can be initiated through telehealth. Buprenorphine can be prescribed via audio-only telehealth. However, a methadone prescription requires audio and visual connection with a provider.
  • Where state law allows, nurse practitioners and physician assistants can order medications for opioid use disorder (MOUD) in OTPs.
  • The requirement that a patient have a history of addiction for a full year before being eligible for treatment is removed.
  • Access to interim treatment is expanded, allowing patients to initiate MOUD while awaiting further treatment.

This rule (89 FR 7528) became effective on April 2, 2024, and providers need to be in compliance by October 2, 2024.

The specifics and further details can be found on the Federal Register website.