Spatial proximity and access to buprenorphine or methadone treatment for opioid use disorder in a sample of people misusing opioids in Southern California
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Spatial proximity and access to buprenorphine or methadone treatment for opioid use disorder in a sample of people misusing opioids in Southern California

Filetype[PDF-254.16 KB]


English

Details:

  • Alternative Title:
    J Subst Abuse Treat
  • Personal Author:
  • Description:
    Background:

    In response to the opioid crisis, over the last 10 years substantial strides have been made to increase the availability of evidence-based treatments for opioid use disorder, in particular buprenorphine maintenance, in the United States. Despite these worthwhile efforts, uptake rates of evidence-based treatment remain relatively low. As part of a broader study of opioid misuse, we examined proximity to evidence-based treatment as a potential barrier to treatment access.

    Methods.

    In 2017–2018, we surveyed 218 individuals misusing prescription opioids or using street opioids in three Southern Californian counties. Driving distance from place of residence to the closest treatment provider offering buprenorphine or methadone treatment for opioid use disorders was calculated.

    Results.

    Median distance to providers was 3.8 km (2.4 miles). Seventy one (33%) participants had received some form of treatment in the last 3 months, however only 26 (40%) of these had received buprenorphine or methadone maintenance treatment. Participants receiving treatment at the time of their interview were traveling an average 16.8 km (10.4 miles) to reach treatment, indicating that as a group this population was both willing and able to seek and engage with treatment.

    Conclusions.

    In the suburban and exurban communities in which our study was based, our findings suggest that simple physical proximity to providers of evidence-based treatment for opioid use disorder is no longer a critical barrier. Other barriers to uptake of buprenorphine or methadone maintenance treatment clearly remain and need to be addressed.

  • Subjects:
  • Source:
  • Pubmed ID:
    34625318
  • Pubmed Central ID:
    PMC10465062
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