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Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) made easier since COVID-19

For a very long time, treatment advocates have argued that drugs like buprenorphine could sharply curb the nation’s opioid overdose crisis. But federal laws have it difficult for people who need such medications to get them, until COVID-19.

"Now, as they wield unprecedented freedom to prescribe addiction drugs by telemedicine and evaluate patients by phone, many doctors and advocates say they’re unwilling to relinquish that flexibility without a fight. Already, there is a burgeoning movement to keep many of the new policies in place permanently. Many treatment providers across the U.S. have said publicly that the new status quo represents long-sought change that could positively transform patient care for decades to come."

Many doctors have taken advantage of new regulations that allow them to prescribe buprenorphine without evaluating patients in person, instead conducting visits by video chat or even by phone.

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