ALBUQUERQUE, N.M., April 7, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Director of National Drug Control Policy Michael Botticelli announced that the New Mexico Medical Society, the New Mexico Hispanic Medical Society and the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) are partnering to hold trainings to enable more New Mexico physicians to be able to provide their patients with buprenorphine for prescription opioid and heroin use disorders.
"We know that medication-assisted treatment, along with other support services, is more effective at helping people sustain their recovery from opioid use disorders, but it's not readily available to those who need it in too many communities nationwide," said Director Botticelli. "President Obama recently announced several initiatives aimed at expanding access to these life-saving medications in underserved communities, including efforts to make sure that more prescribers are trained to prescribe medications like buprenorphine."
The first half of the buprenorphine trainings will be held online, and physicians can complete the trainings at two live sessions with expert trainers in August.
"Creating greater access to medication-assisted treatment for individuals seeking recovery from opioid use disorders has become imperative in New Mexico," said Tom Hill, Senior Advisor for Addiction and Recovery for SAMHSA. "Getting more physicians trained and qualified to prescribe medications like buprenorphine will help more New Mexicans achieve recovery and wellness."
While the overdose epidemic is a problem for every community across the country, it has affected New Mexico more than many other states. In 2014, the drug poisoning rate in the state was 86% higher than the national average, with more than 27 deaths for every 1,000 people in the state.
"As healers, physicians play an integral role in supporting and promoting public health. As such, NMMS is excited to offer a buprenorphine training to medical providers statewide this summer," said William L. Ritchie, MD, President-elect of the New Mexico Medical Society. "Teaming with partners at UNM – ECHO program and the Hispanic Medical Association, we hope to have medical professionals who are trained in medication assisted treatment in every corner of the state before the chile harvest. Our physicians are active partners in addressing the overdose and abuse crisis in our state and these educational offerings will provide the basis for individual and community healing."
The New Mexico Medical Society and the New Mexico Hispanic Medical Society will work with several state partners to make sure that New Mexico physicians have access to these trainings.
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SOURCE New Mexico Medical Society