Anchor lead: How should we approach helping people with opioid use disorder? Elizabeth Tracey reports
Substance use disorders are causing an epidemic parallel to Covid-19, with over 80,000 deaths reported over the one year period ending in May 2020, according to the CDC. Eric Strain, a substance use disorders expert at Johns Hopkins, says we must revamp our entire approach to helping people overcome this problem.
Strain: We talk about patient centered care, but then we say what you should want is to be on buprenorphine, or maybe naltrexone. We need to better understand what do they want that they think would be helpful to them? What are the social factors that are impacting? How are we addressing those? And what are the things that drive them to find meaning and purpose in their lives? We should not be saying here’s a buprenorphine prescription, now you’re better. We need to understand what is it that will make them have more meaning, more purpose. How will they flourish in their lives? :34
Strain says such an approach will require a treatment team as well as social supports and policy changes. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.