October 29, 2016
Written by Keith Hochadel, AATOD Ohio Board Delegate

Greeting from Ohio! Ohio, as are many states, is in the midst of an opiate epidemic. Overdose deaths are on the rise and strategies are coming from many partners.

Ohio’s legislature has been working on increasing capacity to Medication Assisted Recovery. Currently, to create an OTP in Ohio, an agency must have operated as an Ohio Mental Health and Addiction services provider for a minimum of two years and be considered a not for profit. Legislation creating waivers for both of qualifications has been introduced. It appears that this will be addressed either in the last session before newly elected members take their seats or in the first quarter of 2017. This will enhance capacity for those suffering from opiate use disorder considerably. While Ohio has seen an increase in OTPs under the current system from 9 to over 20, there are still access issues.

Ohio will also be undergoing a change in reimbursement for Buprenorphine products. Similar to the daily reimbursement for Methadone currently received, Buprenorphine dispensing will carry a similar daily model. Details are being worked out but this is scheduled to take effect January 1, 2017. This shift will enhance access to additional M e d i c a t i o n Assisted Recovery products while also bringing patients to the facility for appropriate counseling, and minimizing diversion opportunities.

Certainly there are many other strategies in the works including having each Mental Health and Addiction Services Board area having, or at least having access to, a more robust continuum of care. We are appreciative to all who have provided input of these strategies to provide education, prevention and treatment services for opiate addiction.

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