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The American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry (AAAP), has been awarded a three year grant in partnership with the American Osteopathic Academy of Addiction Medicine (AOAAM) and the American Psychiatric Association (APA), by the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT), Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). This grant provides funding to support training physicians and physicians-in-training in office-based treatment of opioid use disorders. This project is known as the Physicians' Clinical Support System-Buprenorphine (PCSS-B) because at present only buprenorphine is a scheduled medicine FDA approved for office-based treatment of opioid use disorders. The PCSS-B project provides the required 8 hours of training needed to obtain a waiver to prescribe buprenorphine in office-based treatment of opioid use disorders.
Click here to view the PCSS-B website.
Who We Are
The PCSS-B is a collaboration among the American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry, the American Osteopathic Academy of Addiction Medicine, and the American Psychiatric Association. Each of these three organizations is authorized by the Drug Addiction Treatment Act of 2000 (DATA 2000) to provide training leading to waiver eligibility for physicians who want to offer office-based treatment of opioid use disorders using buprenorphine in their practices. Since 2001, AAAP, AOAAM, and APA have trained over 1,000 physicians who have received a waiver that allows them to engage in office-based treatment of opioid use disorders.
Why This Is Important
While we have made progress in training physicians, the gap in providing effective treatment of opioid use disorders continues to widen, moving beyond heroin-addicted individuals to a much larger and diverse segment of the population. This increase is predominantly due to an alarming increase in addiction to prescription opioid analgesic medications. Recognizing the impact of this addiction, as well as learning how to treat opioid use disorders, is an important step in combating this ever growing medical problem.
Goals of the PCSS-B
Goal #1: Train physicians in the workforce to provide treatment of opioid use disorders.
Working collaboratively, AAAP, AOAAM, and APA offer a variety of opportunities for physicians to obtain training in treatment of substance use disorders and in the use of buprenorphine in treating opioid use disorders. Mentoring is also made available to physicians-in-training and those engaged in clincal practice.
Goal #2: Provide clinical training that emphasizes practical issues in the recognition and treatment of opoid use disorders.
PCSS-B offers training in the treatment of opoid use disorders in local areas presented by physicians who are experienced in prescribing buprenorphine to treat opoid use disorders. Following training, these physician trainers also serve as local mentors to trainees. In addition, presentations on advanced topics in the treatment of opoid use disorders are offered monthly by telemedicine modalities, including telephone conferencing and webinars.
Goal #3: Provide advanced training that addresses more complex issues in the treatment of those with substance use disorders, opioid use disorders, and other mental or medical illnesses.
PCSS-B provides clinical-vignette focused courses that offer continuing medical education credits. The courses are available through online and CD modalities.
Goal #4: Make buprenorphine training widely accessible to physicians through use of multiple training formats and technologies.
The PCSS-B provides several training approaches: Half and Half Courses (3.75 hours of on-your-own CD-based training with 4.25 hours of face-to-face training), webinars, tele-broadcasting/video-conferencing, and live presentations of the full eight-hour course leading to waiver eligibility. PCSS-B also has experienced clinical mentors available for those physicians who are waivered and practicing office-based treatment of opioid use disorders, who who may not have participated in a recent training course and who would like to ask questions about treatment of opioid use disorders as issues or concerns may arise in their practices. Mentors are listed on the PCSS-B website. A specific mentor can be requested or PCSS-B staff will match a physician with a mentor.
Half and Half Trainings
In an effort to provide training in a way that is more flexible for both practicing physicians and physicians-in-training, AAAP sponsored the creation of the Half and Half course. The first half of the course is 3.75 hours of CD-based training. This CD contains training on substance abuse treatment, opioids, and the use of buprenorphine in the treatment of opioid use disorders from office-based practices. An examination in the trainee materials packet must be successfully completed as part of the process to obtain a waiver for prescribing buprenorphine.
The other half of the course is a face-to-face, classroom-style training with small groups in a 4.25 hour training. The training focuses on specifics of treating patients with opioid use disorders in office-based settings and clinical vignettes to help trainees think through "real life" experiences in opioid use disorders treatment.
The combined CD and face-to-face training will provide the required 8 hours needed to obtain the waiver to prescribe buprenorphine in office-based treatment of opioid disorders. If you have any questions about the Half and Half course or are interested in a training session, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 888-5PCSSB-4U.
Hot Topics in Buprenorphine Treatment Webinar Series
Hot Topics in Buprenorphine Treatment is a PCSS-B sponsored webinar series that addresses a variety of clinical topics, as well as emerging legislative, regulatory, and practice management issues. The sessions feature national clinical experts, researchers, and government officials. Hot Topics is designed as an ongoing educational experience for physicians who have completed buprenorphine training, but all interested physicians and clinicians are invited to participate. For more information about scheduling or to obtain recordings of past webinars go to: www.pcssb.org.