A number of colleagues and patients have contacted our offices concerning the use and efficacy of Ultra Rapid Opiate Detoxification. It has been used in different parts of Europe and the United States as a technique of withdrawing opioid dependent individuals through anesthesia and the use of narcotic antagonist agents.
Our Association has asked agencies within the federal government to conduct studies, evaluating the clinical safety and long term efficacy of Ultra Rapid Opiate Detoxification. Interested parties are in the process of forming treatment networks to expand access to Ultra Rapid Opiate Detoxification services and a recent episode of “ER” focused on the use of this technique in withdrawing a methadone dependent baby. Green Spring, Inc., a major managed care organization in the United States, issued a policy directive to its provider network, indicating that Ultra Rapid Opiate Detoxification services are viewed as experimental and will not reimburse for such services until they receive better guidance from the federal government including objective research studies that establish clinical efficacy.
We will not take any official position regarding the use of Ultra Rapid Opiate Detoxification services until we have access to such studies. At best, we agree with the opinion stated by Green Spring, Inc., that it is an experimental model.